Estimating the extent of CITES non-compliance amongst traders and end-consumers; lessons from the global orchid trade
St John, F
© 2016 The Authors. Conservation Letters published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
The Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES) regulates trade in over 35,000 species, over 70% of which are orchids. To investigate rule-breaking behavior among traders and buyers in a specific international wildlife trading community, we used direct questions (DQs) and the unmatched count technique (UCT) to survey the orchid growing community about CITES compliance and their knowledge and opinions of the rules. In DQ, 9.9% had smuggled, 4.8% had laundered, and 10.8% had been sent orchids from online purchases without paperwork; UCT estimates did not differ significantly. Growers with greater knowledge of CITES rules were more likely to break them, and there were widespread negative views of CITES among respondents. We recommend targeted enforcement focusing on both online trade and at the point of import, coupled with efforts to encourage traders and end-consumers to engage with discussions on CITES rule implementation
AH was funded by NERC (NE/J500458/1) and AN was supported by Defra Darwin Initiative. Translation checks provided by H Shimai, O. Poh-Tek, N. Zakaria, P. Etique, D. Bogar´ın, and I. Simon. Policy advice from K. Malsch.
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