It’s official! CITES adopted a definition of hunting trophy. And, it considers worked and manufactured items made from the hunted animal as part of the hunting trophy. Here is the official language:
“The term ‘hunting trophy’ means a whole animal, or a readily recognizable part or derivative of an animal, specified on any accompanying CITES permit or certificate, that:
i) is raw, processed or manufactured;
ii) was legally obtained by the hunter through hunting for the hunter’s personal use; and
iii) is being imported, exported or re-exported by or on behalf of the hunter, as part of the transfer from its country of origin, ultimately to the hunter's State of usual residence.”
Considering all the other very restrictive definitions that were proposed by various participants in the working group, most of which excluded worked items, we are pleased with the final definition. Although the wording is very technical, it allows any parts or derivatives of an animal to be traded as a hunting trophy, as long as they appear on the proper paperwork and are verified by the exporting party to be a part of the entire trophy. For the time being, the United States will keep its restriction that excludes worked and manufactured items from being considered a part of the trophy. However, we believe that the United States will eventually replace their definition with the new CITES definition.
Internationally, hunters and governments will benefit from this definition. They will be saved from confusion as to what constitutes a worked item and they will not have to provide several different permits for different items made from the hunted animal. The hunter will now have one permit that verifies his trophy and we believe there will be fewer trophy seizures of as a result. In addition, the taxidermy and crafting industries in Africa will be relieved of their concerns about losing business due to problems associated with trade in worked and manufactured items made from a hunted animal.