There are rules that you have to follow if you want to bring ornamental aquatic animals or aquarium fish to Sweden. The rules are intended to protect the environment and prevent the spread of infectious diseases.
Since ornamental animals live without coming into contact with natural watercourses, the rules for the protection against infectious diseases are less stringent when it comes to ornamental aquatic animals than other aquatic animals.
Please note that you must follow the rules for trade with animals if
Please note that the introduction into Sweden of live freshwater crayfish belonging to the families Astacidae, Cambaridae and Parastacidae is prohibited.
Certain species are covered by CITES, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. When you bring animals belonging to these species into Sweden, there are special rules that you must follow. This applies both to trade within the EU and trade with countries outside the EU.
Species may also be covered by the Species Protection Regulation, which complements the provisions of the CITES Convention. The Species Protection Regulation is intended to protect European species of wild fauna and flora by regulating how these species may be traded and kept.
It is your responsibility when bringing animals into the country to ensure that the rules are followed. If you do not follow the rules, the animals may be seized, quarantined, and, in the worst case, euthanised at the border. Please note that you must find out in advance if the animals may be kept in Sweden without special permission.
The rules may change if required, for example, by the risk of infectious disease.
If there are any doubts about the species to which an animal belongs, the Swedish Customs may request the assistance of an expert from the Swedish Board of Agriculture to determine the species. This examination entails a cost which you, as the person bringing in the animals, will have to pay.
You may bring ornamental aquatic animals into Sweden as pets without special requirements, provided that:
The animals must also not belong to a species susceptible to certain diseases included in a specific EU list.
The list of diseases and susceptible animal species can be found in the EU Regulation 2018/1882.
You are welcome to contact us if you need help finding out which animals are included on the list of specific diseases and susceptible species.
Additional precautions must be taken if your animals are listed on the EU list of certain diseases and susceptible species.
These measures must be taken if the species is listed under category D in the Annex to the EU regulation 2018/1882 as a listed animal species, under either the headings Species and group of species or Vector species.
The same requirement also applies to carp which are susceptible to spring viraemia, the only disease affecting ornamental fish for which Sweden has taken national measures.
If you bring in either susceptible animals as listed in the EU Regulation, or carp fish, the following requirements apply in addition to the requirements above:
If the animals are not travelling with the owner but with someone else acting as an agent (also called an authorised person), your agent must have a written authorisation from you where you state
You must also be able to prove that you, as the owner, will yourself travel within 5 days before or after your agent and your animals. You can do this by providing e.g. a copy of your ticket or a booking confirmation for your flight.
Ornamental invertebrates that are aquatic but are not fish, crustaceans or molluscs may be brought into Sweden as pets without restriction. Further information about the rules for invertebrates as pets can be found on our page about unusual pets.
Ornamental aquatic animals which are brought in from a country outside the EU must originate from a country from which it is permitted to bring aquatic animals into the EU (Annex XXI in Regulation 2021/404).
You are welcome to contact us if you need help finding out from which countries outside the EU you are allowed to bring animals.
You must bring the animals in via an approved Entry Point into the EU. This refers to specifically designated travellers’ points of entry for pets, where the identities of the animals and any accompanying documents can be checked. The animals must be brought in via an Entry Point in the EU Member State to which they first arrive.
In Sweden, the airports Stockholm Arlanda and Gothenburg Landvetter are Entry Points. If you travel directly to Sweden with your ornamental aquatic animals, they are to be controlled by the Swedish Customs at one of these Entry Points. Normally, you do not need to notify the Swedish Customs in advance or at the border control, but may simply pass through. However, if your animal belongs to a species for which the entry requires a special permit, because they belong to a protected species or an alien invasive species, you need to contact the Swedish Customs at the border control by passing through the so-called red lane or passage. More information about this can be found at the website of the Swedish Customs.
Please note that if you travel to Sweden via another EU Member State, you need to find out what rules apply to bring ornamental aquatic animals into that country, and find out where the Entry Points in that country are.
Every country applies its own rules for the import of animals. For that reason, you should contact the veterinary authorities in the country which you are visiting, or that country’s embassy, to find out what you need to know.
Before you travel with animals or export them to countries outside the EU, you need to find out if any export restrictions apply due to contagious animal diseases.
Contact the embassy or the veterinary authorities of the destination country in good time and find out:
In order to travel with or sell an animal to countries outside the EU, the animal must have a health certificate that must be issued by an official veterinarian in Sweden before the journey. Contact the veterinary authorities or embassies of the country in question in good time before the journey and find out which certificate is to be used and what requirements apply for the animal to be allowed to travel into the country. When you have found out this information, contact an official veterinarian.
If you sell animals to a country outside the EU, you must submit an electronic customs declaration to the Swedish Customs.
Here, you can find out what rules apply when you are bringing animals or animal products to the United Kingdom, but you must also read the general rules that apply when exporting to countries outside the EU.
As of 1 January 2021, new rules apply to trade with the United Kingdom. The ministry responsible for these rules is the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA). If you have any questions, please contact them.
The rules are described in the guide Border Operating Model.
The UK is implementing the new rules in several phases throughout 2021 and 2022. The conditions for exports to the United Kingdom may change, and it is therefore important that anyone carrying out exports stays up-to-date via the DEFRA’s website.
Companies that are exporting to the UK need to, among other things:
The importer to the UK should pre-register live animals, breeding materials and products from animals from the EU with the UK system Import of Products, Animals, Feed and Food Systems (IPAFFS). This must be done at the latest one business day prior to the expected arrival. A health certificate must always accompany the consignment. Physical controls may be carried out.
The health certificate has been developed by UK authorities and is available in the EU computer system TRACES.NT or on DEFRA’s website. It is your responsibility as an exporter to find out which certificate must be used, and for that reason it is important that you, potentially with the help of the importer, find out what is required by checking DEFRA’s website. You can also read more on their website about how the various parts of the certificate are filled in and which information is mandatory, and which is optional.
This applies to exports to the United Kingdom:
If the animals are returning to Sweden after a stay in a country outside the EU, there are Swedish requirements that your animal must meet. The requirements differ from those that apply when leaving and vary depending on the country from which the animal is returning. Make sure you know which rules apply in Sweden before you leave, so that the animal can come back home with you afterwards. You can find the rules further up on this page.
You are welcome to contact us if you have any questions.