Re: CITES, etc.
Sat, 22 Apr 1995 17:21:10 -0400

CITES, regulations, illegal plant smuggling are all topics bound to cause
lively debate.

CITES is still the law of the land(s) and may or may not be changed in the
foreseeable future. It is neither panacea nor useless. I believe the
reasoning behind the regulations are valid ones, but do have some questions
about their actual effect in conservation. If the habitats are gone before
the species can be salvaged, the laws may have had a sad unintended effect on
the very life they were designed to protect.

I would urge anyone with spare plant material of any genus (preferably
species with data) to try and get a Botanic Garden or University interested
in the cultivation of these plants and donate material. Longterm cultivation
by individuals only is risky. Gardens too are subject to policy and monetary
changes and are only a stop-gap for extinction. Without serious habitat protec
tion in the developing world the future is not very encouraging for many
plants and animals.