CITES - conserving or destroying?

Discussion in 'Orchid Conservation' started by s1214215, Apr 17, 2011.

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  1. Apr 30, 2011 #81

    Braem

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    We can't ... and that is the problem. And that is why CITES is nonsence. There is no point in "protecting" animals and/or plants from being collected and/or traded AS LONG as you don't protect their habitats. And as we agree on the fact that MAN will never stop destroying the habitats ... for many reasons ... it is obvious that CITES is a nonsense law. The idea behind it may be great ... as is the idea behind ... but it JUST DOESN'T WORK.
     
  2. Apr 30, 2011 #82

    Howzat

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    Rick
    I have been in Kalimantan (southern part of Malaysia's Borneo) recently and saw the destruction of rain forest first hand. You can imagine what hundred of millions of hectares of virgin forest can contain. Not just the trees, but trillions of plant species, millions of animals, orang outans, sun bear etc have been lost. Ground water level has also risen and erosion happens everywhere. Just compare this to the thousand of plants confiscated, and which were lost "in transit" or died under CITES direction. And CITES were proud of their achievement in hunting the smugled plants??????The number of smugled plants are so so tiny compared to the ones lost in the destruction of the habitat.
    Don't get me wrong, as I have said before the ideas of CITES was good, but if CITES thinks that cross the border policing of ALL plant material (including dead speciment) is the way to conserve plant species, then they have to think again.
     
  3. Apr 30, 2011 #83

    Howzat

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    Rick
    So don't you think that "in USA you can hardly give away propagated species" is a good result of breeding in the lab to satisfy people's demand thus it would reduce demand for wild collected ones. Once sanderianum was priced at around $3000. Now you can buy them for a mere $100. I think this is a good result for conservation.
    Your last para, I agree with you. It points to other direction away from the dogmatic CITES in the name of conservation. But again can you achieve global international cooperation??
     
  4. Apr 30, 2011 #84

    Erythrone

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    I totally agree! The biggest challenge in the world is now destruction of habitat for many species.

    Even in contries where human population is low like in Canada, we have big problems. I don't talk about forestry, since it is possible to have good practices when we cut trees. Temperate forests are easier to manage than tropical ones.

    In Quebec, we cannot collect some native species but we can destroy the habitat (houses, industries, etc.).
     
  5. Apr 30, 2011 #85

    Rick

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    I agree that being able to crank out lab propagated plants did wonders for supplying the US demand. And maybe with the US demand down the 2 park rangers for that fragmentary forest in Thailand can keep up with the present poaching for sukhakulii. Probably the same for sanderianum. Most of the spots where they and stonei used to exist are probably either palm oil plantations or golf courses. There are a couple of parks that probably have reduced demand for poached plants.

    Just curious though how many imported jungles collected plants does it take before someone gets off their butts to breed the snot out of them and satiate a market? I would suspect a tiny fraction of what is actually getting moved across international boarders.

    There were some wonderful wooded areas across the street from my house that are now a highway. Me, my wife and neighbors invested $$$ and time effort and emotion to stop that project. I never even got to poach the orchids I knew grew there, but the life lost from that project will be on the hands of the State and developers, not me.

    So CITES doesn't work, what does? Is blaming CITES for our need for plants a cop out for the energy we could be spending on investing in forest preserves or cooperative breeding ventures? Maybe a portion of plant sale profits could go back to purchasing forest land in Vietnam. In the zoo biz we came up with all kinds of fund raisers to help with rhino conservation. (For all I know it might have all went to buy arms for rebels:sob:
     
  6. Apr 30, 2011 #86

    gonewild

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    The people that produce the plants DO NOT have ANY profits to send back.
    Collectors and hobbyists WILL NOT donate anywhere near enough money to make a difference. ALL the money they do donate goes to pay for the cost of offices and to collect the donations.

    Just enjoy your plants and don't worry about saving the planet.
     
  7. Apr 30, 2011 #87

    Rick

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    True. There's plenty of plants in you're own backyard that are worth enjoying without worrying about possessing something from the other side of the world.

    I grew up in LA where nature was often restricted to the weeds growing up from the cracks in the sidewalk. So having a greenhouse full of legal exotics is treasure enough to appreciate.
     
  8. May 1, 2011 #88

    Howzat

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    Many of us would agree with the idea of protecting the habitat. That is good.
    But the government agency policy is using the words "No matter what". So when a friend saw a clump of caladenia on the side of the road being widened, right in the middle of the path of a buldozer, he got out of his car. He dug the caladenia, and took it home (not knowing where to replant), but not knowing he was being followed home by an ever enthusiastic employee of the department and got instant summon. He fronted the court the following month and was handed a fine of $1500.00. Is that good??? There is a chain of over enthusiastic rule/law/ then the employee and then the court system. So the conservation of habitat should also allow people to salvage plant that would otherwise be dead. There were also stories, about people trying to salvage epyphyte orchids clinging on trees which had been felled by chain saw, got fined as a penalty for his "crime", but the logger and his logging company got medals for clearing the land and "helped" the country's export industry. Can we still trust the governments of countries where habitat destruction still takes place ??? They are the custodian and enforcer of CITES rule.
    CITES could not care less, so don't be fooled.
     
  9. May 1, 2011 #89

    Marc

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    Reading stuff like this makes me so sad. :(
     
  10. May 1, 2011 #90

    s1214215

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    I grow ever more frustrated by CITES and local government law. I know that bureaucrats will reason that laws that stop you saving a plant thats is about to be destroyed also protect those in reserved areas, but the insanity come to play when there is no caveat for plant rescue. Why cant plants be rescued and then replaced into the wild? I too have seen mile after mile of forest destroyed and no one could go in and save the plants. All that was felled was burnt and the rest went under the plow for wheat fields. That is the insanity of Australian law. We cant even save or export a lot of our fauna and flora, yet it is smuggled out.

    I dont understand why countries dont see these plants and animals as a resource. Breed them, export a percentage, and from the profit rehabilitate the remainder to the areas in need.

    I recently exported my orchid collection back to Australia. Probably the last time I will do such a thing. Apart from the phenomenal cost, and plants lost to fumigation, the laws pertaining to import are being gradually tightened to prevent imports by making it hard to do. Why, in a nutshell, some bureaucrats got their butts kicked over a disease outbreak in the horse industry several years ago, but instead of fixing that problem area (theres money in it), they clamp down on plant and other animal imports to make it look like they are doing something.

    A problem in Thailand is that many locals like wild plants as they are cheap. Why by a 1000 baht propagated line bred plant when you can get the forest plant for 100 baht a bunch or 300 baht by the kilogram. That make even more sense when the buyer may only earn 15000 baht a month. Collection here wont stop when many species cant be economically produced for the masses at prices they can afford.

    In this way, plants are consumed locally, and yet they are restricted from export. As far as I can see it, we have to preserve plants in collections as soon there will be nothing left by denuded forests and oil palm plantations in SE Asia

    To be honest, I think most politicians care little beyond the next election. Votes will make change, and thats the only way.

    Brett
     
  11. May 1, 2011 #91

    Braem

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    I just heard another good one - I hear a hybrid between sanderianum and gigantifolium was not awarded because gigantifolium is illegal in the USA ... but if I followed the canhii discussion properly ... canhii is legal in the USA ... so how shizoid can a law be ....
     
  12. May 1, 2011 #92

    Braem

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    But even if we do get fund raising etc . etc ... what does it matter ... CITES is still nonsense ...
     
  13. May 1, 2011 #93

    quietaustralian

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    I did a search of CITES trade database to see which countries were trading in these four species.

    All the transactions in the tables are for plants (A/D = art. Propagated, W=wild), CITES doesn’t issue permits for flasks so they are not recorded unless the transaction was prior to the amendment excluding flasks.

    I have included only the left half of the table to reduce the size of the pic, the right half relates to re-export so is of little interest. In the import purpose column T= trade and S= science. The database will generate results from 1975 until 2 years prior to the date of search, 2009 are the latest results.

    This is the CITES trade database so to be included in the database all the plants listed left the export country with CITES approved permits. I had expected to see that the US was the only country not trading in these species in which case I would have identified the organisation to lobby. If the plants entered the US but were confiscated, this data still shows that the US is playing its own game.
    Regards, Mick

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  14. May 1, 2011 #94

    JeanLux

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  15. May 2, 2011 #95
    Nope Guido, canhii is still illegal here in the US. Gigantifolium WAS legal here, until the USFW suddenly decided that Sam Tsui's plants,which had been legally sold for awhile, were actually illegal. Sam got screwed, and now gigantifloium and its many offspring are illegal.
     
  16. May 2, 2011 #96

    Rick

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    Is VN /Vietnam, TW /Taiwan, and CA/Canada?

    If so it looks like all trade (with these plants) with Vietnam stopped with everyone around 2000.
     
  17. May 2, 2011 #97

    Howzat

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    Thanks to all for bringing up some very useful materials. McGough paper is very useful and explain why/how the problems started and still persist.
    After some insight into CITES, let me say that CITES is NOT really an organisation that promotes conservation, it was merely established to ban TRADE, with the belief that it will stop the pillaging/smugling of native orchids from the wild, thus they call it : "CONSERVATION". However, if we look at what has happened in REALITY. It has NOT stopped the gathering/pillaging from the wild particularly the newly found ones. Although it has not completely stopped the pillaging of well known species such as rotschildianum, sanderianum etc, it certainly has drastically reduced the flow. NOT because of CITES, but because of the AVAILABILITY of plant materials which are in the hand of HOBBYISTS, who continue to propagate and flood the market. And these people are in my book the real CONSERVATIONISTS. NOT CITES and its officials who thinks that they are doing an excellent job in consrvation. They are highly paid, lawyers and public servants who know nothing about orchids and live in their own IVORY TOWERS. I have to agree with Dr. Braem on this issue.
    While CITES has approved some exemptions (notably the in vitro propagation), it is still riddled with some highly ideallistic theory/rules, notably that about the "LEGALITY" of the parents of such seedlings in flasks. IF CITES is really concerned with CONSERVATION, then it should have been grateful to the few people who have produced thousands of seedlings, whatever the parentage are. It is noted with concerns that USFW strictly adheres/addresses those exemption rules to the detriment of free flow of artificially propagated seedlings into the US. It has and will confiscate flasks of seedlings whose parentage are "UNKNOWN". May I tell those officials of CITES, that confiscation of seedlings in flasks (and left to die) is HIGHLY ANTI CONSERVATION, no matter what excuses you may present. USFW would not know who to give the flasks to or grow it on and then use them for further propagation, as all of them, for many many generations will still be deemed ILLEGAL. To all contributors in this forum, what chance do we have here ?? in changing the description and definition of CONSERVATION??? NOTHING, because we are dealing with a bunch of people, I can only describe as the biggest knuckle heads.
     
  18. May 28, 2011 #98

    s1214215

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    An interesting link showing the distribution of Paph hangianum within China

    Download and install Google toolbar or go to http://au.babelfish.yahoo.com/ for translation from Vietnamese.

    http://www.hoalanvietnam.org/Article.asp?ID=564

    Howzat I agree completely. I have worked within governent bureaucrazies and dealth with several in various countries. A big part of the problem occurs with people who largely care little for conservation choose to ennact policy and law to cover their own arses. We have seen this in Australia after the equine influenza outbreak (which occured due to race horses being give a quick ticket in to the country as race money in big money), and post outbreak and loss off masses of livestock on the Eastern Seaboard, what happens? AQIS and Environment Australia crack down on plant imports (covertly), by extreme unterpretations of policy. Why??? Bureaucrats covering arses.

    Thankfully Paphs going to Oz is still not a problem in flask. I recently sent thaianum plants back and they passed in ok and little loss. Also send a malipoense hybrid plant.

    Brett
     
  19. May 28, 2011 #99

    quietaustralian

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    Hi Brett,

    That map was originally published on www.slipperorchids.info . The map was based on various sources. I believe the source of the information relating to hangianum naturally occurring in Yunnan is based on the statement below:


    The botanists introduced me to a local orchid grower who had mainly cymbidiums in his backyard, but also a few paphiopedilums, including P. hangianum. I suggested that these plants most likely would have their origin in nearby Vietnam, but the orchid grower emphatically confirmed that a friend from Malipo had collected these plants near Malipo in Yunnan. Though doubts remain,I am inclined to believe that statement.

    Perner, H. "The Moon Slipper - Paphiopedilum hangianum." 2006

    L. Averyanov wrote the following:
    Distribution. Vietnam (Bac Kan, Tuyen Quang). Endemic.
    Studied specimens. Bac Kan, Cho Don, HAL 4789 (HN), HLF 806 (HN, LE);
    Tuyen Quang, Na Hang, HAL 126 (HN, LE), HAL 192 (HN, LE).
    Notes. Local endemic with very restricted distribution. There are few doubts that description of P. singchii reported from southern Yunnan is based on plants imported from Vietnam.
    Turczaninowia 2008, 11(1) : 5–168

    In the description of Paph singchii Z.J. Liu et J.Y. Zhang wrote:
    “singchii is described based on two flowering plants cultivated in the Shenzhen City Nurseries. It was said the plants were collected from Southern Yunnan”
    P. singchii Z.J. Liu et J.Y. Zhang, 2001, Acta Phytotax. Sin.38, 5: 468.


    I’m more than happy to hear of other documentation relating to slipper orchids of South East Asia.

    Regards and thanks, Mick
     
  20. May 29, 2011 #100

    Roth

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    Hangianum were sent by the truckload to Wenshan and Malipo nurseries. There are some massive storage places here dealing in Vietnamese wild orchids. No wonder those hangianum came from Vietnam anyway.

    Singchii is a mystery. What Chen was selling under that name was a pygmy form of emersonii, about the size of helenae and a 5 cm flower. However the description is clearly hangianum. Now if you look on Ebay, there is a Beijing nursery selling fresh vietnamese hangianum and emersonii, as well as the lao/vietnam canhii. You understand that most of the chinese paphs in fact came from Vietnam, including paph malipoense. I have seen in the wild phal malipoensis, it is growing in Vietnam, not in China too.
     

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