Estimating identification uncertainties in CITES ‘look-alike’ species

Alfino, Sara, Roberts, David L. (2019) Estimating identification uncertainties in CITES ‘look-alike’ species. Global Ecology and Conservation, . pp. 1-24. ISSN 2351-9894. (doi:10.1016/j.gecco.2019.e00648) (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Abstract

Achieving sustainability in international wildlife trade encompasses a series of challenges, such as identification uncertainty for taxonomically complex groups. Although CITES has developed a ‘look-alike’ policy to collectively manage trade in morphologically similar species and thus facilitate enforcement, its effective application with regards to the export quota system is questionable. We used a multidisciplinary approach to provide an understating of the trade in a taxonomically complex genus of Malagasy chameleons. An online systematic survey of trade was undertaken to identify which species of Calumma have been the subject of trade. A matching task was employed to calculate identification error rates among species in the genus. Results suggest that the online market for Calumma is thriving, including species with long-standing zero quotas. Identification error rates varied widely, reaching high levels of error for some species pairs here identified as ‘look-alike’ species. Findings suggest manual identification technique has varying reliability, potentially resulting in misidentification by stakeholders within the trade. Such errors have negative consequences for both chameleon conservation and the long-term socio-economic development of Madagascar. An understanding of the patterns of identification error can help tailor future management and policy plans.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1016/j.gecco.2019.e00648
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH75 Conservation (Biology)
Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > Biodiversity Conservation Group
Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > Biodiversity Management Group
Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > DICE (Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology)
Depositing User: David Roberts
Date Deposited: 10 May 2019 09:15 UTC
Last Modified: 08 Jul 2019 09:04 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/73848 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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