Zoo animals in transit

Zoo animals transiting through New Zealand on their way to another country cannot stay longer than 4 hours. Find out more about transiting requirements.

Transiting requirements

Animals in transit must remain on the vessel or aircraft that brings them to New Zealand at all times, and can't stay longer than 4 hours.

Zoo animals can only transit through New Zealand if there's a specific import health standard (IHS) for that animal and country.

Zoo animals transiting New Zealand must:

  • comply with the veterinary requirements of the final destination country
  • have a contingency plan that has been pre-approved by MPI
  • have an MPI transit permit, which must be presented on arrival in New Zealand.

Download the transit permit for transiting animals through New Zealand:

Notification must be sent to MPI at least 72 hours before an animal arrives in New Zealand, together with the veterinary certificates of the destination country.

For more information about transiting requirements and your contingency plan, email animal.imports@mpi.govt.nz.

Extra requirements if using wood crates or containers

If your animals are shipped to New Zealand in wooden crates or containers, or wood has been used as flooring or walls, you'll also need to comply with the requirements for importing wood packaging.

Containers used for transporting live animals must be new, or cleaned and disinfected with a virucidal disinfectant.

Who to contact

If you have questions about zoo animals in transit, email animal.imports@mpi.govt.nz.

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