These amazing creatures have suffered a 40% drop in numbers. At the CITES CoP18 meeting in Geneva, they were listed on Appendix II for the first time, by an overwhelming vote of 106 to 21, trade in these animals will now be monitored for the first time. This does not protect them from trophy hunters as CITES exempts trophy hunted specimens from ‘trade’ as the take home souvenirs from the kill trips is counted as being ‘non commercial’. See our CITES page for more details

Giraffe facts

Giraffes exist in 21 African countries, have become extinct in 7 countries, and seen a dramatic fall in numbers since the IUCN estimate of 140,000 in 1998. The Giraffe Conservation Foundation estimates there are now fewer than 80,000 left in the wild. Some of the subspecies are at critically low levels, the West African giraffe numbers just 300, and the Nubian giraffe just 650. More detailed information about giraffe numbers, and the different subspecies of giraffe can be found here

giraffe trade

In spite of their dramatic decline in numbers, giraffe parts are exported to the US in huge numbers

  • 40,000 giraffe parts representing 4,000 giraffes were imported to the US over a 10 year period, The Guardian reported in 2018
  • 3,744 hunting trophies of giraffes were recorded as imports to the US over this same period. There are moves to list giraffes under the Endangered Species Act which would give them protection by restricting their imports. The Humane Society International are championing this move.
  • CITES Appendix II listing will not stop trade but it will mean it is recorded accurately. This is why the hunting trophy exemption from CITES needs to change. Please sign our petition to Close This loophole.
Trophy hunters from Great Britain also prey on this magnificent species
thankyou Leonardo DiCaprio for highlighting the plight of giraffes and our petition to get them recognised on CITES appendix II – we did it!