Since trade in animals that were born and bred in captivity and in plants that were artificially propagated does not have the same potential impact on wild populations of fauna and flora, CITES and the EU Wildlife Trade Regulations include provisions that are less strict for trade in such specimens. This page provides an introduction to the legal obligations of EU traders who trade in captive-bred animals and artificially propagated plants to, from and within the EU.
Commission Regulation (EC) No 865/2006, as amended, gives definitions with regard to specimens that were born and bred in captivity and/or artificially propagated.
The above definitions are linked to specific provisions outlined in the EU Regulations, under which specimens of species listed in their Annexes are considered to be born and bred in captivity (Art. 54 and 56 of Commission Regulation (EC) No 865/2006).
A specimen of an animal species listed in the Annexes is only considered to be born and bred in captivity when the Management Authority is satisfied that (Art. 54 of Commission Regulation (EC) No 865/2006):
The Management Authority can also decide that it is necessary to establish the ancestry of an animal for example through the analysis of blood or other tissue (Art. 55 of Commission Regulation (EC) No 865/2006). In such cases, such analysis, or the necessary samples, must be made available to the Management Authority. For the provisions of marking of captive-bred specimens click here.
A specimen of a plant species is only considered to be artificially propagated when the Management Authority is satisfied that (Art. 56 of Commission Regulation (EC) No 865/2006):
Note: Controlled environment in this regard means ‘a non-natural environment that is intensively manipulated by human intervention which may include tillage, fertilization, weed control, irrigation, or nursery operations such as potting, bedding and protecting from weather’. For agarwood producing taxa, which are grown from seeds, cuttings, grafting, marcotting-air-layering, divisions, callus tissues or other plant tissues, spores or other propagules, “under controlled conditions” refers to a tree plantation, including other non-natural environment that is manipulated by human intervention for the purpose of producing plants or plant’s parts and derivatives (Article 56(1) of Regulation (EC) No 865/2006).
Timber and timber products from trees grown in mono-specific plantations are considered as being artificially propagated in accordance with point (a) above, as are trees of agarwood producing taxa grown in cultivation such as gardens (home and/or community garden) and state, private or community production plantations (either monospecific or mixed species).
Because the main focus of CITES and the EU Wildlife Trade Regulations is the conservation of wild species, specimens of species listed in Annex A that were born and bred in captivity or were artificially propagated are treated as specimens of species listed in Annex B (Article 7.1 Council Regulation (EC) No 338/97). In the case of artificially propagated plants, provisions relating to the introduction and import into the EU, as well as export and re-export from the EU, may be lifted under specific conditions with regard to: 1) the use of phytosanitary certificates; 2) trade by registered commercial traders and scientific institutions; and 3) trade in hybrids (see Permits).
In general, any commercial activity (purchase, offer to purchase, acquisition for commercial purposes, display to the public for commercial purposes, use for commercial gain and sale, keeping for sale, offering for sale or transporting for sale) involving specimens of Annex A-listed species is prohibited (Art. 8.1 of Council Regulation (EC) No 338/97). However, under certain conditions you may be allowed to use the specimen commercially, provided that a ‘sale exemption certificate’ has been issued by the Management Authority (Art. 8.3 of Council Regulation (EC) No 338/97) (see Permits) for:
Exemptions: The above-mentioned certificate is not needed in cases where the activity involves (Art. 62 of Commission Regulation (EC) No 865/2006) (see Permits):
Note that a travelling exhibition certificate may be used as an internal trade certificate, exempting the holder from the prohibition to display the specimens to the public for commercial purposes and may also be used in lieu of an import permit, export permit or re-export certificate.
Breeders can obtain, from the Management Authority, pre-issued certificates that allow commercial activities with specimens of Annex A-listed specimens that were born and bred in captivity or artificially propagated, provided that they maintain breeding records, which must be submitted to the Management Authority when requested.
Individuals can also obtain from the Management Authority pre-issued certificates that allow the selling of dead captive-bred specimens of Annex A-listed species (and/or small numbers of dead specimens that were legally taken from the wild within the EU), provided that this person (applicant):
For those three annexes, the EU Wildlife Trade Regulations include no additional provisions (other than the provisions described under Internal trade in the EU, see Permits) for the commercial use inside the EU of specimens that were born and bred in captivity or were artificially propagated.
The European Union does not implement the recommendations of the Conference of the Parties to CITES set out in Resolution Conf. 12.10 (Rev.CoP15) - Guidelines for a procedure to register and monitor operations that breed Appendix-I animal species for commercial purposes with regard to restrictions on trade in specimens of Appendix I-listed animal species produced by commercial captive breeding operations. Registration of such operations with the CITES Secretariat is not a requirement for trade from or to the European Union.