Representatives for SCI and SCI Foundation attended the 29th Animals Committee meeting held in Geneva, Switzerland in late July. The Animals Committee is one of several CITES committees that meet between the Conferences of the Parties (CoP). As the name suggests, the Committee works on issues specific to animals under authority of the CITES treaty. The meeting was the first to occur since last year’s CoP, and the first opportunity for the countries that are Parties to CITES to begin the next cycle of work leading up to the next CoP in Sri Lanka in 2019.
SCI consultant and senior advisor, Johan Svalby, attended the Animals Committee meeting on behalf of SCI; and SCI Foundation Director of Conservation, Matthew Lewis, attended on behalf of SCIF.
During the meeting, the Animals Committee proposed certain species for Review of Significant Trade or Periodic Review. Species are selected for these reviews when the Animals Committee determines that a species’ conservation status or unexpected trade patterns warrant further study. Though the decisions on review of species are not yet final, it is unlikely that any hunted species will be selected for either review.
In late November, the CITES Standing Committee will meet for the first time since last year’s CoP. The Standing Committee deals with administrative, enforcement, and other legal matters of the Convention. Numerous issues important to Safari Club will be addressed at the meeting, including African lion, elephant, and rhino poaching; community livelihoods; capacity building; and rules of procedure. SCI and SCIF will be in attendance at this meeting as well.
Through its participation in these meetings, SCI and the SCI Foundation ensure that the Parties understand that wildlife populations around the world are thriving because of sustainable-use conservation efforts, and that importation of wildlife by international hunters is a small fraction of global wildlife trade. SCI and the SCI Foundation will continue to work to make sure that CITES recognizes the value of hunting.
Stay tuned to Crosshairs and the First for Hunters blog for updates on SCI and SCIF’s CITES efforts.