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Report a biosecurity concern

​Around 30.9 million cargo items, 16 million passengers and 186 million mail items enter Australia each year. The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources has rigorous and highly effective import declaration, inspection and import treatment requirements in place to reduce the risk of harmful pests and diseases entering and establishing in Australia. Despite this, a very small percentage of imported items may still contain a pest or disease of biosecurity concern after being imported.

Reportable biosecurity incidents

You are required by law to report certain biosecurity incidents if you are:

  • a person in charge of goods subject to biosecurity control, or an exposed good order; or
  • a person in charge of an aircraft or vessel carrying goods subject to biosecurity control, or an exposed goods order; and
  • you become aware of a reportable biosecurity incident in relation to those goods.

A report can be made by calling 1800 798 636 or by completing the Reportable Biosecurity Incident form.

Other biosecurity concerns

Managing Australia's biosecurity system is a big job and we can't do it on our own, we need individuals and industry to partner with us. If you see something that could have entered Australia with imported goods, and you think it may be a biosecurity concern, tell the department about it. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • ants
  • decorations made of plant or animal materials
  • fungus
  • large or small bugs
  • leaf litter, seeds or soil
  • live animals or rodents
  • moths and caterpillars
  • spiders
  • snails
  • timber borers or borer activity such as wood shavings/frass.

More information on pests and diseases.
You will not be prosecuted if you or someone you know has unintentionally imported material of biosecurity concern, or if you purchased the item in Australia.
Specially trained departmental officers respond to all reports of biosecurity concerns relating to imported items whether coming through airports, seaports or mail. All reports are investigated.

Biosecurity is everyone's responsibility. We appreciate your assistance in helping to maintain Australia's freedom from exotic and invasive pests and diseases.

How to report a biosecurity concern

Please provide as much detail as you can about the biosecurity concern and the related imported item/s by completing the following form. Alternatively, call the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources on 1800 798 636.

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* Required information

(Please provide details of your biosecurity concern, including type of item, when purchased or imported and from where, and what the biosecurity concern is; for example bugs in rice)
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Last reviewed:
20 Jun 2016