WWF Statement on CITES’ Decisions on Jaguar Parts and Derivatives Trade
The increasing evidence from recent years pointing towards a rise in the illegal trade of jaguar parts throughout Latin America, which could lead to the species’ population loss and local extinctions–it is already extinct in 2 former range countries–, has led to an urgent need to collect more data and assess the challenges posed by illegal trafficking.
“Although some jaguar populations are still thriving, as is the case in the Amazon, we must double-down on our efforts to address this emerging threat. If we do not respond with urgency, we run the risk of history repeating itself after the tiger population was reduced by 95%,” said María José Villanueva, the jaguar conservation lead in Latin America and the Caribbean for WWF.
WWF believes an in-depth analysis to map the illegal jaguar trade within its range, including poaching, trade pathways and networks, and main markets that are driving this trade is necessary to further jaguar species and habitat conservation efforts. The evaluation should include the uses of jaguar specimens within range states and international markets. This study should aim to identify the overall impact of the illegal trade on jaguar populations throughout its range, which includes 18 Latin American countries.
WWF reiterates the crucial role of raising awareness about the jaguar’s importance, status and threats, including its organized illegal trafficking, as well as strengthening the enforcement capacity and information sharing regarding jaguar conservation and its transnational market.