Management of Commercial Harvesting of Protected Flora in Western Australia 1 July 2013 – 30 June 2018



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5.1.1 Licences

Under the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950, "to take in relation to any flora includes to gather, pluck, cut, pull up, destroy, dig up, remove or injure the flora or permit the same to be done by any means". Under the Act, the taking of protected flora from Crown land is prohibited unless a licence is held. On private property a licence is required to sell protected flora taken from that property. Licences are normally issued for a 12 month period.


No licence is required under the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 for the harvest or sale of Australian native plant species that are not native to Western Australia (unless declared as protected). The export of such species still requires an export permit under the EPBC Act.
5.1.1.1 Crown land
The following licences apply to flora taken from Crown land.
a) A Commercial Purposes Licence (under S 23C(a) of the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950) is required when taking flora for commercial purposes, e.g. for sale.
b) A Scientific or Other Prescribed Purposes Licence (under S 23C(b) of the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950) is required when taking flora for scientific or specified non-commercial purposes as prescribed in Wildlife Conservation Regulation 56B, i.e. education, hobby, propagation or personal enjoyment.

5.1.1.2 Private land
A Commercial Producer's or Nurseryman's Licence (under S. 23D of the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950) is required for the sale of protected flora taken from private land. A Commercial Producer's Licence is required for the sale of naturally occurring and/or cultivated protected flora, while a Nurseryman's Licence is required for the sale of protected flora which has been artificially propagated. While applications describe the source of flora to be sold, a combined Commercial Producer's or Nurseryman's Licence is issued which allows the applicant to sell flora of either source. Such a licence may be taken out by either the landowner/occupier or a person who has written authorisation from the landowner/occupier.
The application of licence conditions, the screening process in considering licence applications (Section 5.3.2) and the flora harvest/sale returns required of licensees, all provide the basis for the control of harvesting, the strategies adopted in the control of harvesting and the monitoring of harvesting. For further information on these aspects see the sections on Management Strategies and on Monitoring and Assessment.
The State Minister for Environment may revoke or refuse to issue a flora licence issued under the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950, such as in the case where the licensee is convicted of an offence against the Act. This includes offences relating to the contravention of conditions attached to licences, including conditions relating to the conservation of the flora, its habitat or the ecosystem in which it occurs.

5.1.2 Endorsements

A DEC endorsement is the written permission given to a picker to operate on Crown land managed by DEC pursuant to the Conservation and Land Management Act 1984, or Crown land on which DEC, by agreement, manages flora harvesting on behalf of the managing authority. It is an allocation of a specific area, and in some cases specific taxa, to a picker for their use and may specify particular conditions relating to the access or harvest activity, or taxa and quantities that may be harvested. The authority for this mechanism is established through licence conditions on a Commercial Purposes Licence. The principles and strategies for allocation of areas and taxa are outlined in the Management Strategies section.


Pickers applying for endorsements subsequent to all available endorsements (areas or quotas) being allocated are put on a waiting list until an endorsement becomes available.
Endorsements may not be issued beyond the expiry date of the Commercial Purposes Licence and may not exceed 12 months. It is recommended, however, that area-based endorsements are issued on a three monthly basis to encourage contact between pickers and local (District) DEC staff, and to allow more flexibility in area and taxa allocation.
An endorsement may be cancelled for any breach of its provisions.
Under this plan, the operation and use of endorsements as a management tool is tailored to particular situations related to the tenure of the land on which picking is proposed. The requirements for various tenures are outlined below.


5.1.2.1 Endorsements on Crown land managed by DEC

Endorsements are used to regulate picking on multiple use areas of State forests, timber reserves, other Crown land managed by DEC under the Conservation and Land Management Act 1984 or other Crown land where such land is managed by DEC under a management agreement. Holders of a Commercial Purposes Licence are required to obtain a DEC endorsement on their licence from the local DEC District Office. This endorsement identifies the area to be picked, the taxa and quantities which may be taken and the time period approved. A map which identifies the area usually accompanies the endorsement. Areas are normally identifiable in the field by physical boundaries.


The number of endorsements issued for a particular management area is determined by the combination of taxa being sought, and the number of licensees the area is judged to be able to sustain.

5.1.2.2 Endorsements on other vested Crown lands or reserves

In such situations the licensee is required to obtain the written approval of the applicable land manager prior to any picking, and this permission may specify conditions for the picking. Where the land vesting or management authority which has responsibility for a particular block of Crown land agrees, DEC may issue endorsements for flora harvesting on this land in consultation with the vesting or management authority. DEC may also provide advice to the managing authority as to the controls or conditions that might be included in any approval to harvest on such lands.



5.1.2.3 Endorsements on unallocated Crown land and unmanaged Crown reserves

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between DEC and the Department of Land Administration in relation to management of the flora industry on unallocated Crown land (UCL) and unmanaged reserves was signed in March 2000. Under this agreement DEC has the ability to implement specific management control measures in relation to flora harvesting over all UCL and unmanaged reserves in Western Australia. This includes the issuing of endorsements. Endorsements are issued where there is an identified need to do so for the conservation of particular taxa or for the management of the land.



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