Scientific Collection Permit

What is the purpose of this permit?
To collect and possess fish and/or wildlife for the purpose of scientific investigation and/or education and/or display.

It is unlawful to collect foodfish, shellfish, or wildlife or their parts, nests, and eggs for the purpose of research or display without first obtaining a Washington State Scientific/Education Collection Permit. To collect means to take control of or attempt to take control of wildlife or their nests and eggs. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife interprets ”collect” to mean to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or obtain, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct. This interpretation is consistent with the Endangered Species Act of 1973, Sec 3(18)].
Who issues this permit?
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)
What activities require this permit?
Any trapping, netting, catch and release and handling with the exception of transitory holding of reptiles, amphibians, or invertebrates for identification, and marking or tagging; collecting lethally or non-lethally; and salvage and possession of carcasses or parts with the exception of shed antlers.
How much will this permit cost?
$117.00 annually
Where can I get the application for this permit?
The application is called 'Scientific Collection Permit' is online and can be accessed at
Do I need to include anything with my application?
Study Plan as described in the Scientific Collection Permit Instructions as
Annual report submitted as an Excel spreadsheet that can be accessed at if the application if for a renewal of permit.
How long will it take to review my application?
60 days.
Notes / Comments:
Subject Matter Expert Phone / Email
Permit Timeliness Results

Permit Timeliness data collection is in response to a State Auditor’s Performance Audit and RCW 43.42A. Each regulatory agency developed a plan to improve permit clarity, predictability, and timeliness. Each agency considers the customers experience to ensure permit assistance is simple to use, easy to access, and designed in a customer-friendly manner. Agencies report progress to the Governor’s Office for Regulatory Innovation and Assistance (ORIA). ORIA prepares and distributes reports, with participation from the State Auditor’s Office and Results Washington. See latest report here:

All permits submitted for reporting were entered into this Regulatory Handbook. Here are the results of the performance data:

Estimated Time Required By the Agency to Process a Permit Application (Definition)
Average number of days from Receipt to Complete: 11.8
Maximum number of days from Receipt to Complete: 91

Estimated Time Required By the Agency to Issue a Permit Decision (Definition)
Average number of days from Complete Application to Decision: 42.1
Maximum number of days from Complete Application to Decision: 168

(Summary results based on 364 submittals in 2023)

Where can I get permitting assistance?
Web page URL:
Helpdesk phone: (360) 902-2464 Option 4
Subject matter expert phone: See notes/comments for contact information
Subject matter expert email:
Statewide Contact:
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)
1111 Washington Street SE
Olympia, WA 98501
Telephone: (360) 902-2200
* Permit information last updated 7/31/2020