Posted by: letsharkslive | January 9, 2010

CITES preparation

As most of us know in March there will be a meeting of CITES in Qatar, and one of the items on the agenda will be the proposed listing of six species of shark to appendix II. Appendix II does not afford a total ban of international trade in species, this only happens on appendix I, however an appendix II listing does mean controls on international trade are in place and this is an important step in these species protection.

The proposed species are as follows: Oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus), Porbeagle (Lamna nasus), and Scalloped hammerhead shark (Sphyrna lewini). In addition, the proposed listing of “look-alike” shark species to help enforcement for Scalloped hammerhead shark was found to be justified in two of the four cases, Great hammerhead shark (Sphyrna mokarran) and Smooth hammerhead shark (Sphyrna zygaena).

The only current appendix II listed sharks are the Basking Shark (Cetorhinus maximus), The Great White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias), and the Whale Shark (Rhincodon typus).
We should now embark on a major email and letter writing campaign to our own countries CITES delegates to ensure that the listing of these species goes ahead.

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  1. Hello all,
    there is another shark proposal to CITES CoP15 that is not mentioned here. It’s a proposal to list the spiny dogfish (Squalus acanthias) to App. II, submitted by Sweden on behalf of the EU. This is, together with the porbeagle proposal the second run for the listing of this species.

    For further details on the proposal, please have a look at the CITES website –> CoP15 –> proposals.

    Best regards,

  2. Hi Heike,

    OK thanks for the information. I was a little confused about the spiny dogfish listing as in the advisory panel report from Rome ( decided that they did not meet criteria for Ap II listing. Would appreciate your wisdom in clarifying this.

  3. Hi again! That’s easy to explain: the FAO ad-hoc expert panel is evaluating all marine proposals to CITES. CITES and the FAO have made and memorandom of understanding to cooperate (the ghosts that they called …), meaning the FAO invites experts to this panel, which is then looking into data and gives an advise on whether to support or not. This time they have confirmed the necessity of listing some of the species and for some again they have not. But one can only consider this as their opinion and they are known to rather lay down FAO criterias instead of CITES criterias in their evaluation. The panel can also be biased by fisheries favouring experts or members coming from countries known to be opponents to the proposals (that’s now my evaluation of the panel!). Any advise of this panel is only one voice in the choir and no official CITES advise (that’s the CITES secretariat’s evaluation, which will probably be issued later in Feb or so). Also, any contracting party can submit a proposal no matter what the FAO finally says about it, and the result is also up to the contracting parties (which hopefully will be different to the FAO opinion!). At last time’s CoP the FAO panel advise was quite a pain in the a.. as opposing parties constantly referred to it. This time, at least, the porbaegle got their blessings.

    Hope this clarifies a bit.


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