US Origin Pet Birds
Import Procedures for a Pet Bird Entering (U.S. Origin) the United States
ADVISORY: Until further notice, live avian commodities (including eggs for hatching) from the following countries or regions have been prohibited entry to the United States due to the presence of highly pathogenic avian influenza: Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Benin, Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cambodia, Djibouti, Egypt, Ghana, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Ivory Coast (Côte d'Ivoire), Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestinian Autonomous Territories, People's Republic of China, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, South Sudan, Sudan, Taipei Chinese/Taiwan, Thailand, Togo, Turkey, Ukraine, and Vietnam.
Returning U.S. origin pet birds from these countries must go into 30-day quarantine in an USDA animal import quarantine facility. Otherwise, the bird is quarantined for 30 days at the owner’s residence (home quarantine). Pet birds returning from Canada are exempt from quarantine.
Pet Birds The USDA defines pet birds as those that are imported for personal pleasure of their individual owners and are not intended for resale. Poultry, which includes pigeons and doves, are not considered pet birds.
General Requirements US Origin Pet Birds (except from Canada)
- Current Veterinary Health Certification (see below)
- USDA Import Permit (apply using VS Form 17-129
- Health certificate issued by a US veterinarian prior to departing the U.S.
(A copy of this document must be submitted with the permit application for the bird to be considered a US returning pet bird)
- Inspection at a designated USDA port
- 30-day Quarantine either in an USDA Animal Import Center or in the home
- Fish and Wildlife Services Certification (if necessary)
- Payment of user fees that apply
Current Veterinary Health Certification
The certificate must:
be issued by a full-time salaried veterinarian of the agency responsible for animal health of the national government in the exporting (foreign) country of origin;
- be dated within 30 days of the time the bird is shipped to the United States;
- must state that the bird has been examined and show no evidence of Exotic Newcastle Disease, Chlamydiosis, or other communicable diseases of poultry;
- state that the bird is being exported in accordance with the laws of that country;
- be in English, if not, a complete written English translation must be provided; and
- accompany the bird while in transit.
Health certificates that accompany imported live avian shipments must indicate that:
- Birds or poultry were not vaccinated against any H5 or H7 subtype of avian influenza.
- The shipment will not transit through any regions where APHIS considers highly pathogenic avian influenza to exist, as listed here on this web page.
- The birds or poultry have been vaccinated against Newcastle disease (avian paramyxovirus) at least 21 days prior to export, using vaccines that do not contain any velogenic strains of Newcastle disease virus. OR:
- Birds or poultry have not been vaccinated against Newcastle disease
General Requirements US Origin Pet Birds returning from Canada
- Veterinary inspection at designated USDA port. Arrangements for veterinary inspection must be made 3 working days prior to arrival.
- Pet birds arriving from Canada through an air/ocean port are required to have a USDA Import Permit (apply using VS Form 17-129). Pet birds arriving from Canada through an eligible U.S.-Canadian land border port are exempt from the permit requirement.
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) Certification (if necessary)
- The bird must be accompanied by the U.S. original health certificate, an import permit, a current governmental veterinary health certificate and,
if necessary, FWS certification.
- There are certain designated ports where pet birds may enter. Therefore, the first port of entry into the US will be a designated port. At the first port in the U.S., the bird will be inspected by a USDA port veterinarian. The owner must make arrangements at least three working days in advance. If the bird is going into a home quarantine, the first test for Exotic Newcastle Disease and Avian Influenza will taken at the time of entry.
- If the returning pet bird has resided in a country on the advisory listed above,
Then the first port of entry will be at an airport located near one of three quarantine facilities: John F Kennedy International, New York: Miami International, Florida or Los Angeles International, California.
All U.S. origin pet birds that have resided in an area listed on the advisory must enter the country and undergo quarantine at one of the following import quarantine facilities:
New York Animal Import Center
C/O APHIS Veterinary Services at
JFK International Airport
230-59 Rockaway Blvd.
Suite 101, Room 101
Jamaica, NY 11413
Telephone (718) 553-3570
Fax (718) 553-3572
Miami Animal Import Center
6300 NW 36 Street
Miami, FL 33122
Telephone (305) 876-2200
Fax (305) 876-2201
Los Angeles, California
Los Angeles International Airport
11850 South La Cienega Blvd.
Hawthorne, CA 90250
Telephone (310) 725-1970
Fax (310) 725-9119
30-Day Home Quarantine Requirements
- The owner must sign a statement in the presence of the USDA port veterinarian declaring that the bird has not been in contact with poultry or other birds while out of the United States.
- The owner must also sign the "Agreement of Pet Bird Owner" (VS Form 17-8) obtained from the USDA port veterinarian at the port of entry. By signing the form, the owner agrees to:
1. maintain the bird in his or her personal possession, separate and apart from all poultry and other birds, for a minimum of 30 days,
2. make the bird available for inspection by the USDA upon request for the second test and then until the end of the quarantine period, and
3. notify the USDA immediately if any signs of disease are noted in the bird or if the bird dies during the quarantine period. In addition, the bird may not be transported within the United States during the quarantine period.
Importation User Fees
There are pre-established fees for importation of pet birds. The permit applicaton fee, quarantine,vet inspection and laboratory fees can be accessed here.
Importers should submit the application and the processing fee by check, money order, charge card or by providing a USDA user fee account. These fees apply if arrival is via during regular working hours (approximately 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM, Monday through Friday), and prior notification has been given. Overtime charges apply if the bird arrives before or after these hours. In addition, USDA port veterinarians are not stationed full-time at each port of entry, prior notification is critical to the import process.
Fish and Wildlife Service Permit Information
In the United States, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) regulates the importation of birds protected by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and the Wild Bird Conservation Act of 1992 (WBCA). These regulations are part of international conservation effort to protect exotic wild birds subject to trade. Most exotic pet birds including parrots, parakeets, macaws, lories, and cockatoos are affected by CITES and the WBCA. However, the budgerigar, cockatiel, and rose-ringed parakeets and peach-faced lovebirds are exempt.
According to the WBCA, in order to import a pet bird of non-U.S. origin into the United States, you must have continuously resided outside of the United States for at least one year. In addition, the WBCA limits the number of pet birds that can be imported to two birds per person, per year. All required WBCA and CITES permits must accompany the bird while in transit.
Please visit the FWS web site at: http://permits.fws.gov/ to obtain more information and the permit application. If you have questions you can contact the FWS at (800) 358-2104.
Overseas calls should be placed to (703) 358-2104.
How to Contact Us
If you need additional information about importing pet birds into the United States, please contact us at:
USDA, APHIS, VS
National Center for Import and Export
4700 River Road, Unit 39
Riverdale, MD 20737
(301) 851-3300 telephone
(301) 734-6402 fax