NLIS Rules

The National Livestock Identification Scheme (NLIS) is Australia’s compulsory tracing system for livestock – tracking every location of every sheep, goat, and cattle for its lifetime.

It has 3 main purposes:

  • Disease control
  • Chemical contamination control
  • Protection of Industry reputation

It works in 3 ways:

  • Identification of the animal (using a visual or electronic tag device)
  • Identification of the location of the animal (known as the Property Identification Code, or PIC)
  • Correlation and storage of the information via a web-based database

What you need to do to be NLIS Compliant

1) Obtain a Property Identification Code (PIC).
A PIC is an 8-character code used to identify your property. You must have a PIC to move livestock on and off your property. Obtain a PIC by contacting your State NLIS authority.

2) Register for an NLIS account.
Create your NLIS account here to see and record livestock movements on and off your property. It can take up to a week to get your account activated.

3)Order your NLIS-accredited ear tags
You’ve come to the right place. Some industries insist on electronic RFID tags, others allow for visual tags. We know the NLIS requirements for every industry. Order your NLIS approved tags here  (click to shop) now or contact us (click here for contact us details) for help getting the right tags for your needs.

4) Apply the NLIS-approved ear tags to your livestock.
You can order your applicators or watch how to apply your tags here. Contact us for further advice.

5) Record movements of your livestock on the NLIS database.
If the livestock is bought or sold through a saleyard or abattoir they will notify the NLIS for you. If the sale is private it is the RECEIVER’S responsibility to log the movements.

An animal’s movements between properties owned by the same producer must also be recorded if the properties have different Property Identification Codes (PICs), if an animal is moved to an adjustment property, an animal dies, or an animal is lost.

6) Get help from the NLIS
If you are having any difficulties accessing your NLIS account or need information about the compulsory livestock tracing system you can contact the NLIS Helpdesk on 1800 654 743 between 9am and 5pm Sydney time Monday to Friday or email

Since it’s Murphy’s Law things will go wrong on a weekend, evening or public holiday you might get a faster response to issues here.


2 thoughts on “NLIS Rules

  1. Charlie ONeill says:

    I have some all flex pic numbered tags sent out to me but half are white and other half orange. Is there any difference does it matter which ones i use on a particular animal.

    • jane.rindfleish says:

      Hi, the cattle NLIS Tags – white is breeder tags so for any born on your place. Orange ones are post breeders – so if any lose them you put orange ones in or ones that have lost them you replace them with an orange one. Sal

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *