Tackling unsustainable wildlife trade


This chapter describes and illustrates the issues surrounding wildlife trade policies. Wildlife trades are complex and heterogeneous, requiring different management approaches although the issues discussed may be common. It should be possible to develop a suite of investigations based on the issues raised in this chapter to estimate the impacts of each policy on wild populations, each being judged relative to the others. One key message which must be conveyed is that total protection of the wild resource may prove impossible (at least in the short term) under any trade regulation system. The two primary legal instruments used to address unsustainable exploitation are outright bans and conditional allowances permitting limited trade. International wildlife trade is primarily regulated through the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) under the United Nations. Voluntary management schemes are sometimes used to encourage sustainable practices instead of legal obligations.


Dutton, A.J., Gratwicke, B., Hepburn, C., Herrera, E.A., Macdonald, D.W. February 2013. Tackling unsustainable wildlife trade. Key Topics in Conservation Biology 2.