The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) entered into force to control the trade in endangered or protected animal or plant species. CITES controls apply to the import from or export to third countries of dead or living controlled species, as well as parts or derivatives (eg skin, fur, teeth, shell, feathers or blood and parts of some plants, eg seeds).
CITES now has 175 signatory countries, including the UK and all other European Union countries. All signatories must abide by these internationally agreed rules that regulate the import, export and transhipment of protected flora and fauna.
This guide provides need-to-know information about CITES controls, such as how to import endangered species into the UK, the scope of the controls, and roles of the organisations involved in enforcement.