Johannesburg, SA (Oct. 2, 2016) – The following statement was released today by the Wildlife Conservation Society concerning the adoption of the proposal by countries gathered at CITES Cop17 to extend greater protection to the African grey parrot.


Said Susan Lieberman, WCS VP of International Policy and head of the WCS delegation at CITES:

“We congratulate the Parties to CITES for agreeing to transfer the African grey parrot from Appendix II to Appendix I, thereby prohibiting all international commercial trade. We applaud the range States of Angola, Chad, , Gabon, Guinea, Nigeria, Senegal, and Togo for sponsoring this proposal, along with the United States and the European Union and its Member States.

“Inclusion in Appendix I is in the best interests of the conservation of the species as it faces both habitat loss and rampant illegal and unsustainable trade for the international pet trade.

“If this bird could talk – and it certainly can – the African grey parrot would say thank you. Now with the protection of Appendix I, and the enhanced enforcement that is needed,   the voice of the African grey parrot will not be silenced across the great forests of Africa.

“The African grey parrot has experienced significant population declines throughout its range in West, Central and East Africa. It is extremely rare or locally extinct in Benin, Burundi, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Togo. This once very abundant species of the forests of West, Central, and East Africa is unfortunately now threatened by out of control international trade.