Exporting animal trophies

Find out what you need to do if you want to take home an animal trophy or hide from New Zealand.

What you need to do

  1. Check the requirements for your destination country.
  2. Let MPI know that you plan to take a trophy or hide out of New Zealand.
  3. Complete a declaration for hunting trophies.
  4. Get an export health certificate, and any other certification your destination country needs.

Check the import requirements

Import requirements vary between countries. Before you export your trophy or hide from New Zealand, you’ll need to contact a quarantine office in your own country to find out what they need.

They can tell you:

  • the import requirements for a trophy or hide from New Zealand
  • what documentation they will require from New Zealand.

You may need to apply for an import permit or other documentation from your local quarantine office.

In most cases, all you will need is an export health certificate that says the trophy or hide is from New Zealand. MPI can provide this certificate.

Processing requirements

Some countries – for example, those in the EU – will only let you import a trophy or hide that has been processed in approved premises. Other countries have processing requirements that must be certified.

Export approved premises

CITES permits

Some countries require a Convention for International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) permit.

A CITES permit allows you to move a trophy or hide that is from a CITES protected species across international borders. 

In New Zealand, CITES permits are issued by the Department of Conservation (DOC).

CITES permits  

Contact MPI

Before you arrive in New Zealand, email the MPI office in the region closest to the airport you will be departing from.

Your email should include:

  • what you want to take home
  • the country you are going back to
  • your arrival and departure dates
  • the airport you’re flying out of
  • what paperwork your local quarantine office requires
  • a copy of the import permit, if your local quarantine office gave you one.

Complete a declaration

When you return from your hunt, complete a declaration for game trophies and return it to the MPI office you emailed earlier. They will then be able to issue you with an export health certificate. This will usually take several days.

Download the declaration for game trophies form [DOCX, 50 KB]

If you leave soon after your hunt

If you will be leaving New Zealand soon after you finish hunting, you can submit your application form in advance.

When you return from your hunt, confirm by phone what trophies you are taking. The certificate can then be prepared for you to pick up immediately.

Pick up your export health certificate

The export health certificate will usually need to be picked up from the MPI office near the Auckland or Christchurch airport. It may be possible to pick up the certificate from another airport, but advanced notice is required to arrange this.

You will need to present the original signed form when you come to collect the export health certificate. There is an administration fee (cash only) for each certificate issued.

Last reviewed: