News story

New regulations controlling trade in some shark and ray species

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Trade in manta rays and five shark species is being restricted from 14 September 2014 to protect their populations from declining.

Photograph of manta ray
A manta ray

On 14 September the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) will add a number of new marine species to Appendix II, meaning that global trade of these will be restricted.

The CITES appendices are lists of species given different levels or types of protection. Appendix II lists species that are not necessarily now threatened with extinction but may become so unless trade is closely controlled.

The species affected are:

  • porbeagle (Lamna nasus)
  • oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus)
  • scalloped hammerhead shark (Sphyrna lewini)
  • great hammerhead shark (Sphyrna mokarran)
  • smooth hammerhead shark (Sphyrna zygaena)
  • manta rays (Manta spp.)

The UK is one of 180 parties to CITES along with other EU Member States. From 14 September the changes to the provisions of EU regulations on Annex II species will apply. This means trade of these fish into or out of the EU will have to be accompanied by CITES permits or Introduction from the Sea certificates and evidence will have to be provided that they have been harvested sustainably and legally.

Further information on how to apply for CITES export or import permits is available from the AHVLA by email or telephone 0117 372 8774.

Information on CITES appendices is available on their website.

Image credit

Published 3 September 2014