10:07 PM

Bill Banning Trade in Imperiled Wildlife in Colorado Passes State’s House


Contact: Haley McKey




DENVER (Friday, April 22, 2016)– The Colorado House has passed an anti-wildlife trafficking bill that bans trade in any part or product of several imperiled species, including rhinos, elephants, sharks, cheetahs and sea turtles, with an exemption for ivory in antiques, guns and musical instruments. Defenders of Wildlife has documented that numerous ivory trinkets and shark products are sold in  Colorado every day.

Wildlife trafficking is one of the most lucrative forms of illegal activity in the world, with an estimated global value as high as $23 billion. Defenders of Wildlife recently released a report revealing the growing crisis of wildlife trafficking between Latin America and the United States.

The following is a statement from Colorado-based Defenders of Wildlife attorney Jay Tutchton:

“This bill’s passage in the House is a great step forward in the fight against wildlife trafficking in Colorado. It protects imperiled species while allowing reasonable exemptions for antiques and a compete exemption for guns and musical instruments. Strong state anti-trafficking legislation provides needed support for federal efforts and will make a difference for wildlife all over the world.

“Every day, thousands of animals are taken from the wild to feed the market in wildlife products.  An elephant is poached approximately every 15 minutes.  In that same timeframe approximately 2,500 sharks are slaughtered primarily for their fins. The wildlife trade is a pervasive global epidemic threatening many species with extinction, and we need to do everything we can to stop it.”


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Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With more than 1.2 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit www.defenders.org.