Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
As part of the United Nations Environment Programme, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, or CITES, plays a central role in the world-wide fight against the trafficking of endangered plant and animal species. The CITES convention is in essence an international treaty. CITES was drafted as a result of a resolution adopted in 1963 at a meeting of members of IUCN (The World Conservation Union). The text of the Convention was finally agreed at a meeting of representatives of 80 countries in Washington DC., United States of America, on 3rd March 1973, and on 1st July 1975 CITES entered in force.
Today CITES has a „membership“ of 175 nations, including the Czech Republic, which committed itself to the Convention in 1992. Member nations pledge to ban commercial international trade in an agreed list of endangered species, and to monitor closely the trafficking of plant and animal species at risk of becoming endangered.
Both living specimens and animal parts and by-products (e.g. medicines and ointments) are covered by the Convention, and the export of these is permissible only upon official confirmation that they are not, or do not contain elements of, recognised endangered species. In the Czech Republic, the Ministry of Environmental Protection is responsible for regulating such matters.
Brno Zoo has in its care many species protected by the Convention, including: Sumatran Tiger, Sri Lanka Leopard, Chimpanzee, Grevy's zebra, Kiang, Blue and Yellow Macaw and others.