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The international wild bird trade: what's wrong with blanket bans?


Rosie Cooney a1c1 and Paul Jepson a2
a1 Fauna & Flora International, Great Eastern House, Tenison Rd, Cambridge, CB1 2TT, UK
a2 Biodiversity Research Group, 5 South Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3TB, UK

Article author query
cooney r   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
jepson p   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 

Abstract

In response to a declaration in 2004 from a coalition of conservation and animal welfare organizations to ban imports of wild birds into the European Union, we propose that such blanket or indiscriminate bans are unlikely to be effective as a generic conservation approach to the wild bird trade. We further argue that such trade bans, particularly when imposed by Northern constituencies on Southern countries and communities, can act counter to broader values of equity and sustainable development. Here we draw attention to a range of problems and unforeseen consequences of trade bans and highlight the conservation potential of market-led mechanisms that seek to reform trade chains to make them more ethical and sustainable. We contend that it is time for conservation scientists to critically examine the evidence concerning the efficacy of these two strategies as they relate to the trade in wild birds.

(Published Online December 7 2005)
(Received May 10 2005)
(Revised September 19 2005)
(Accepted October 19 2005)


Key Words: Bird conservation; CITES; livelihoods; sustainable use; trade bans; wildlife trade.

Correspondence:
c1 Correspondence: Fauna & Flora International, Great Eastern House, Tenison Rd, Cambridge, CB1 2TT, UK. E-mail rosie.cooney@fauna-flora.org


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