© 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.
A Sumatran orang-utan, confiscated in Aceh, stares through the bars of its cage 
© 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
Latest News & Publications
22 Aug 2022

Black and white rhinos show differing trends as illegal trafficking remains a major threat

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WWF Japan has launched a Social and Behaviour Change (SBC) campaign aiming to discourage consumers ...

16 Jun 2022

On World Sea Turtle Day, WWF calls on governments, research institutions, NGOs and individuals to ...

01 Jun 2022

WWF has launched a new report to help businesses in addressing the biodiversity crisis.

16 May 2022

International Maritime Organization adopts new guidelines to combat wildlife smuggling: Global ...

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27 Feb 2022

WWF is gravely concerned about the mounting situation in Ukraine

18 Jan 2022

Rosette Chantal Rugamba, a 24-year veteran of the African ecotourism and protected areas sector, ...

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TRAFFIC is a joint programme of WWF and the World Conservation Union (IUCN) that monitors the global wildlife trade. TRAFFIC also works in close co-operation with CITES.