Protection of endangered species
Exotic travel souvenirs and gifts may impress by their peculiarity and
Many species of flora and fauna which are used for travel souvenirs and gifts are endangered in their population or even threatened by extinction. Meanwhile, especially exotic species of fauna and flora are subject to strict import regulations. Many travellers do not realise that the purchase of such souvenirs may result in rude awakening.
The Washington Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of
Wild Fauna and Flora (Washington Convention)
However, it has dramatic consequences. Many wild species of fauna and flora are threatened, some have even become nearly extinct.
In the meantime, about 150 states have joined the Washington Convention. Today, more than 8,000 species of fauna and about 40,000 species of flora are protected by it.
According to the Washington Convention there are three categories of protection:
- Species of fauna and flora which are threatened by extinction are protected most strictly: they are listed in annex I to the Convention. With some very few exceptions, the importation or exportation of these species is prohibited.
- In annexes II and III to the Washington Convention the threatened species of fauna and flora are listed. They may only be exported out of or imported into Germany if an export permit was granted by the country of descent. In most cases and in particular for live animals and plants an import permit by the Federal Republic of Germany is required additionally.
Protection of Endangered Species by Customs
According to the Washington Convention, Customs controls the importation and exportation of protected animals and plants in commercial consignments as well as in passenger traffic.
Thus, it contributes to the enforcement of stricter trade restrictions based on the Washington Convention and the appropriately prescribed legal provisions.
Please, find data about findings and seizures or custodies made by Customs on the section of customs investigation.
Apart from legal provisions regarding the protection of endangered species in many cases further protective measures must be considered, which particularly result from regulations regarding animal diseases.