Harvest cycads from wild

Cycads are woody plants that are slow growing and live for a long time. 

All Northern Territory (NT) threatened cycad species are protected, along with those found in parks and reserves.

For your own use

To harvest protected cycads for your own use you will need a permit to take or interfere with wildlife

You don't need a permit for cycads that are not protected.

To sell

To harvest cycad seeds, leaves and whole plants for commercial use you will need a permit to take or interfere with wildlife.

Under Australian law, you may need a permit to export cycad products. 

Go to the wildlife import and export permit page at the Australian Government's Department of Environment website

Commercial harvest limits

Limits apply to commercial cycad harvesting in the NT. 

Seeds

You can remove up to 25% of well-formed seeds from an individual cycad stem in one calendar year.

Leaves

You can remove up to 25% of leaves from an individual cycad stem in one calendar year. 

Leaf harvesting is restricted to individual cycads that are not reproducing and have an above-ground stem at least 5cm tall.

Whole plants

You may be permitted to take whole plants. 

This is assessed on a case-by-case basis.

If allowed, the yearly harvest limit for individual species is 10% of the estimated population in the harvest area.

To find out more contact the Parks and Wildlife permits office.

Traditional use

You don't need a permit to harvest cycads for traditional use if you are all of the following:

  • an Aboriginal person 
  • have traditionally harvested cycads in a particular area
  • harvest cycads for food, ceremonial or religious purposes. 

If you are an Aboriginal person and want to harvest cycads for commercial use, you will need a permit. 

You will also need a permit if you are a non-Aboriginal person and want to harvest cycads on Aboriginal land.

Read about permits to take or interfere with wildlife.

Salvage

You may be allowed to salvage cycads if they would otherwise be destroyed by the building of a new road, firebreak or land clearing. 

All plants must be labelled with a Parks and Wildlife approved tag before they can be taken from the salvage site.

More information

To find out more about cycad harvesting, contact the Parks and Wildlife permits office.

Last updated: 27 June 2017