Wildlife import/export permits – Overview

In Alberta, different import and export permits and procedures apply to different categories of wildlife species.

The following information is not a comprehensive explanation of the provincial or federal regulations for importing and exporting wildlife. It is meant only as a guide.

Under federal and provincial legislation, each wildlife species is classified into a different category. Each category has different requirements for import/export permits and procedures. To find out which category the type of wildlife you wish to import falls into and which permits are required, contact your nearest Fish and Wildlife Division district office.

News releases and information bulletins

Related information

Environment and Protected Areas

  • Controlled Animals
    The department of Environment and Protected Areas manages Alberta's fish and wildlife resources and leads the process to manage the possession and sale of live exotic wildlife species. Other involved partners include the department of Justice, Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Branch and Alberta Health.

    Species or groups of species are listed as controlled animals if they pose public safety or ecological concerns. These include animals with toxins or behaviours which endanger people, are likely to cause damage to native species and their habitats, present a risk of disease, or otherwise are liable to cause economic damage to agricultural or environmental resources and result in a reduction or loss of recreational or economic opportunities that rely on the use of native species and their habitats.

    Live controlled animals may not be possessed or sold in Alberta. The only exceptions are for specific and limited numbers of controlled animals if they are pre-approved for possession by permitted zoos or research facilities.

    Through successive amendments to the Alberta Wildlife Regulation over the years, efforts have been made to refine the list of species on the controlled animal list to best reflect the current known taxonomic listing and to reflect the discovery of additional species. The controlled animal list in the Alberta Wildlife Regulation was last updated in 2013.

  • Fish and Wildlife Office Area Office – Contacts
    Contact a Fish and Wildlife officer for advice.
  • Fisheries and Wildlife Management Area Contacts
    For information and advice about importing fish, see the Fisheries Management Area Contacts Map.
  • Non-licence Animals
    Information and listing of Non-licence Animals in Alberta.
  • Wildlife Research and Collection
    More about applying for a research permit.
  • Zoo Standards
    Provincial zoo standards and how to apply for a zoo permit.

Other Government of Alberta

For information about importing fish eggs for the purposes of raising fish, see:

Government of Canada

To learn more about federal regulations on animal and animal product imports and exports, visit the Canadian Food Inspection Agency website at:

To contact the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), refer to:

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) sets controls on the international trade and movement of animals or plants deemed adversely affected by excessive commercial use.

For information about federal CITES permits, call 1-800-668-6767, or visit the Environment Canada website at:

United States and international

To learn more about importing and exporting wildlife and wildlife parts between Canada and the U.S. visit the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service website at: