/ ©: WWF / James Morgan

Wildlife trade

Illegal and unsustainable wildlife trade are major threats to many of the world's species. Through its global network and especially the work of TRAFFIC, WWF helps to combat the illegal trade and encourage sustainability in the legal trade.
  • Wildlife Crime Initiative: A long-term, collaborative initiative between WWF and TRAFFIC to help tackle the global poaching crisis and unprecedented surge in organised wildlife crime, which threatens the survival of iconic species and undermines national security, the rule of law and sustainable development.
  • Changing consumer behaviour: Persuading consumers to make informed choices when buying wildlife-based products.
  • Encouraging people to use their local wildlife sustainably: Working hand-in-hand with communities to provide practical help to develop sustainable livelihoods and conserve natural resources.
  • Working with the private sector: Promoting sustainable wildlife trade.
  • Backing the enforcement of appropriate wildlife trade laws: Supporting the enforcement of CITES, which regulates the international trade in wildlife; providing tools, training and funding; encouraging cross-border cooperation; funding critical research; and raising public awareness about illegal and unsustainable trade issues.
  • Promoting new laws for the control of wildlife trade, when appropriate: WWF has contributed to achieving protection under CITES for several marine and timber species, such as the humphead wrasse, great white shark, and the Asian commercial timber species, ramin.
  • Working at the 'top level': Advocating to ensure that the mandate of multilateral environment agreements, such as CITES, are not weakened or over-ruled by institutions, such as the World Trade Organization, which pursue economic priorities with little consideration for their long-term, environmental impacts.
WWF also publishes the Living Planet Report, which showcases the impact of humans on the world's natural resources. The report reminds governments that they must act now to reduce the degradation of the planet, including species loss as a result of wildlife trade.
 / ©: Chris R. Shepherd - TRAFFIC Southeast Asia
A Sumatran orang-utan, confiscated in Aceh, stares through the bars of its cage
© Chris R. Shepherd - TRAFFIC Southeast Asia

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 / ©: naturepl.com / Andy Rouse / WWF
Clic to discover how WWF is working to protect rhinos in Africa and Asia
© naturepl.com / Andy Rouse / WWF


  •  The WWF Wildlife Crime Scorecard report selects 23 range, transit and consumer countries from Asia and Africa facing the highest levels of illegal trade in elephant ivory, rhino horn and tiger parts.

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