Sheep NLIS help desk

Page last updated: Wednesday, 20 June 2018 - 1:08pm

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

To enhance the traceability of sheep in Western Australia, the State Government supports a sheep National Livestock Identification System (NLIS) help desk. Sheep traceability is a vital part of our biosecurity system that assures trading partners we can effectively trace and manage sheep disease outbreaks and chemical residue detections.

The sheep NLIS help desk will provide telephone and email support to producers requiring assistance with any aspect of the NLIS process. This may include creating a database user account, uploading a movement record, explaining an error message, providing advice on identification requirements or any other issue related to sheep identification or movement in WA.

To contact the sheep NLIS help desk phone +61 (0)8 9363 4150 (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm) or email

Sheep NLIS help desk assistance

  • Support in obtaining a NLIS database account
  • Step-by-step help in uploading mob-based movements
  • Problem-solving NLIS issues
  • Sheep identification requirements
  • NVD/waybill queries

Why is traceability important?

Livestock traceability is important particularly in the event of a food safety incident or an emergency animal disease outbreak such as foot-and-mouth disease. The National Livestock Identification System (NLIS) can be used to trace animals back to their property of origin, identify any contact animals and allow control measures to be implemented quickly. The NLIS database records the movement of all sheep across Australia. It requires sheep producers and industry stakeholders such as agents, abattoirs and saleyards to register and record sheep movements on the electronic database.

In October 2014, the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) released a Regulation Impact Statement on improvements to the sheep NLIS. It recommended enhancing the current mob-based movement system rather than implementing a mandatory electronic identification system similar to cattle. All states, including WA, are now working to enhance sheep traceability through improved extension, verification and auditing activities.

Mob-based movement recording

  • All sheep owners must ensure sheep coming onto their properties are recorded on the NLIS database.
  • Any movement of mobs of sheep (one or more animals) between properties with different property identification codes (PICs) must be recorded on the NLIS database within 48 hours of the arrival of the animals at their destination property.
  • This includes movement to and from agistment properties and between properties owned by the same person but with different PICs.

Who must do it?

The receiver (or purchaser) of sheep is responsible for ensuring the movement record to their property is completed. Sheep bought at auction (saleyards, ram sales and clearing sales) will be recorded and uploaded by the agent running the sale or the saleyard operator.

You will need to either record the mob-based movement yourself or arrange for someone to do it for you when you:

  • buy sheep privately - including rams and private sales through agents
  • move them between your different PICs.

To contact the sheep NLIS help desk, phone +61 (0)8 9363 4150 (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm) or email