Keeping birds

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It's estimated there are more pet birds in Victoria than there are cats and dogs combined.

It is a common misconception that birds are a low maintenance pet. 

Birds actually require a high standard of care, quality housing, and good environmental enrichment, to stay happy and healthy. Perhaps most importantly, most birds are highly social (flock) animals – it is unnatural and cruel to leave them alone for long periods of time. 

Unless you are home most of the day, you may need to be prepared to buy more than one bird (although limits apply – see 'Keeping animals in Indigo Shire'(PDF, 92KB) ).   

Bird ownership is a serious commitment for 5 to 10 years, depending on the type of bird you choose (cockatoos can live 80 years or more).

You can legally keep some native and non-native birds without a permit while others may require a permit from us (such as pigeons) or other government agencies. Ensure you buy your birds from a legal source such as a registered pet store or reputable private owner.

If you wish to keep birds in Indigo Shire, you must follow the rules set out in Local Law No. 2 (Environmental Local Law).(PDF, 3MB)

These controls have been introduced to protect the amenity of the area and reduce the impact on neighbours from:

  • Odours
  • Noise
  • Dust
  • Rats, mice, vermin and insects. 

These controls include:

  • Housing structures
  • Storing of food in vermin and fly-proof containers
  • Drainage
  • Distance from perimeter
  • Adequate fencing to prevent birds escaping
  • The area is kept in a clean and sanitary condition, with refuse and rubbish removed weekly
  • The birds do not cause a nuisance.

Our officers will investigate all complaints received regarding birds. 

The owner may be required to implement changes and/or an infringement notice may be issued to the occupier of the premises. 

You can find out more information on keeping birds as pets at agriculture.vic.gov.au.   

For further information, please contact us.

The illegal sale of exotic bird species should be reported to biosecurity officers at the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR) on 136 186. 

The sale of native bird species taken from the wild or restricted native species should be reported to the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) on 136 186.

Documents

Local Law No. 2 (Environmental Local Law)(PDF, 3MB)

Fact Sheet - Keeping animal in Indigo Shire(PDF, 92KB)