New Jersey to Ban Import and Possession of CITES Trophies

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has issued a conditional veto on two bills that will make the importation and possession of CITES species by New Jersey residents illegal. The original bills are being amended but are expected to be approved and made effective by May 26. In their original drafts, New Jersey Senate Bill 977 would prohibit transport, possession, import, export and sale of Big Five species, and Senate Bill 978 would prohibit possession and transport of Big Five species at Port Authority of NY and NJ airports and facilities. New Jersey Senate Bill 977 Christie’s veto would still allow for the transport, import and export of Big Five species in New Jersey that are not remaining

Lion (and Leopard) Workshops - Kasane, Lusaka, Maputo and Dar es Salaam

In the fourth week of March, Conservation Force attended a lion workshop with 90 lion specialists in Kasane, Botswana. The workshop was a function of the African Lion Working Group (ALWG). Conservation Force Board Members Philippe Chardonnet and yours truly have belonged to the ALWG for more than a decade and deceased board member Bertrand des Clers also belonged. All attendees at the Kasane meeting avoided being distracted with the debate over hunting versus protectionism/animal rights, but for one related topic. The agenda item was: "What is the alternative to hunting?" No realistic alternative was suggested or disclosed to provide the habitat and prey, the wildlife department operating

USFWS Accepting Comments on Reclassification of African Elephant as Endangered

On March 16, 2016, the US Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) published Notice that it had made a positive 90-day finding on two petitions to reclassify all African elephant from "threatened" to "endangered" under the ESA. 81 FR 14058. The USFWS has opened a comment period as part of its review of the elephant's status and the five listing criteria. Anyone - experts, range nations, average citizens - is invited to submit information about the status of the African elephant that would support or challenge the proposed up-listing. The comment period is only 60 days and closes at 11:59 pm Eastern Standard Time on May 16, 2016. The USFWS' recent 90-day decision is only a finding that the two petit

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