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Horse owners reminded to have PICs in place

Local Land Services is reminding all landholders with one horse or more that they must have a property identification code (PIC).

Horse owners also need a PIC if they intend to take part in the show season.

PICs are a fundamental part of the national livestock identification system (NLIS). They provide traceability to specific properties, which is vital in the event of disease outbreaks such as horse flu or Hendra virus.

In NSW the Stock Diseases Regulation 2009 requires all livestock owners, managers and occupiers of land that carries bison, buffalo, camelids, cattle, deer, equines (i.e. horses and donkeys), goats, pigs, poultry and sheep to have a PIC.  Even if these livestock are kept as pets a PIC is necessary.

Under the NLIS owners of cattle, sheep goats, pigs, deer, bison buffalo, alpacas, llama, horses,100 or more poultry or 10 or more emus or ostriches must have a PIC when trading or moving these livestock, for example to a show or competition.

Many horse owners with livestock may already have a PIC.  If so, simply include the PIC number on entry registrations or other paperwork if your horse is participating in a show.

Landholders without a PIC can apply to their nearest Local Land Services office or online at

During disease outbreak emergencies, the PIC system helps Local Land Services trace back the source and contain the potential spread of the disease.

The chance of a serious disease spreading increases during the show season when horses and other livestock congregate in a small area like the local showground.

Show societies have been upgrading their health and disease control measures, and collecting PIC data as part of the process to help with disease traceability.

Local shows and other livestock competitions are important social events for country people.

Taking sensible precautions to prevent disease spread, and cooperating with competition organisers in the collection of PIC data will ensure the show tradition continues to thrive throughout NSW.

For more information about PICs or animal health, please contact your nearest Local Land Services office or website

Note:  It is not mandatory to identify horses by microchip, although some industry groups may require it.


Media contact: Mark McGaw, 02 4824 1911