Fossicking in Queensland
Queensland is a fossicker's paradise, with its diversity of gem deposits known worldwide. Fossickers can try their luck finding agate, aquamarine, chrysoprase, garnet, opal, sapphire, thunder eggs, topaz and zircon.
The Department of Natural Resources and Mines is responsible for the Fossicking Act 1994 and Fossicking Regulation 2009, which have improved and clarified the opportunities for fossicking in Queensland.Fossickers require a fossicking licence, which can be obtained from a fossickers licence agent. For more information on the provisions that apply under this legislation, see the guide to Queensland fossicking legislation.
For information on how to minimise any risks or dangers while fossicking, download the dos and don'ts of tourist and recreational fossicking in Queensland (PDF, 257 kB).
Permission to fossick
- Provided they have the written permission of the land owner, the holder of a Fossickers Licence may fossick on most land throughout the state.
- Fossicking is regulated in state forests and timber reserves, and is permitted only in declared fossicking areas, or in areas for which the Mining Registrar has been given a 'general permission'.
- Fossicking is not permitted:
- in national parks
- in conservation parks
Fossickers must negotiate arrangements for camping with the land owner, except in those declared areas where camping is controlled under the Fossicking Act 1994.
General permission to fossick
- A land owner may give a general permission for fossicking and camping in an area to the Mining Registrar for the Mining District in which the land is located.
- This permission is given subject to conditions specified by the land owner.
- If the holder of a Fossicker's Licence does not comply with these at all times, permission to remain on the land is revoked, and the fossicker must leave immediately.
Where a land owner has given a general permission, a licence holder does not need to obtain written permission from the land owner.
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Last updated 14 May 2013