Research Article

Global wildlife trade across the tree of life

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Science  04 Oct 2019:
Vol. 366, Issue 6461, pp. 71-76
DOI: 10.1126/science.aav5327
  • Fig. 1 Wildlife trade in terrestrial vertebrates (birds, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles) affects ~18% of species globally.

    Numbers in brackets are the total number of traded species. IUCN threat status codes: data deficient, DD; least concern, LC; near threatened, NT; vulnerable, VU; endangered, EN; and critically endangered, CR.

  • Fig. 2 Wildlife trade occurs across the tree of life, but some clades are more heavily targeted than others.

    Phylogeny branches for (A) birds, (B) mammals, (C) amphibians, and (D) reptiles are colored to represent the impact of wildlife trade up to each node (i.e., clade). Warmer colors (red) represent heavily traded branches (i.e., high percent of traded species). The 20 highest traded families are labeled (bold name indicates high richness, nonbold name indicates both high richness and proportion of total). The first outer band indicates threatened (VU, EN, CR, and DD; orange) and nonthreatened (LC and NT; yellow) species. DD species were considered threatened because of their small geographic range size. The second outer band indicates traded (red) and nontraded (pink) species. Gray concentric circles scale a 20-million-year period.

  • Fig. 3 Predicted future traded species.

    Probability of a species being traded in the future based on (A) body size, (B) phylogenetic relatedness, and (C) the proportion of species traded in respective families. Upper panels show the probability of trade across all currently nontraded species, and lower panels reflect the probability distribution of trade around the 0.9 and 0.95 confidence intervals.

  • Fig. 4 The geography of wildlife trade in terrestrial vertebrates.

    Wildlife trade richness increases with the number of species in a cell for (A) birds, (C) mammals, (E) amphibians, and (G) reptiles. (B, D, F, and H) Wildlife trade richness and hotspots of wildlife trade are concentrated in tropical regions. Top 5% and top 25% indicate areas with the largest number of traded species per cell globally. Points are color coded by the geographic realm. Black lines in scatterplots indicate a locally estimated scatterplot smoothing (LOESS) fit.

  • Fig. 5 Geographical patterns in wildlife trade type across birds, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles.

    Pet and product trade richness for (A and B) birds, (C and D) mammals, (E and F) amphibians, and (G and H) reptiles. Pet trade includes species traded as household pets, for expositions, circuses, or zoological gardens. Species traded for products include those used for bush meat, trophy hunting, clothing, medicine, or religious purposes. Points are color coded by the geographic realm. Points occurring above the 1:1 equivalency line indicate higher levels of trade as products than as pets.

Supplementary Materials

  • Global wildlife trade across the tree of life

    Brett R. Scheffers, Brunno F. Oliveira, Ieuan Lamb, David P. Edwards

    Materials/Methods, Supplementary Text, Tables, Figures, and/or References

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    • Materials and Methods
    • Figs. S1 to S8
    • Tables S1, S2, S4, S6, S8, and S9
    • Captions for Tables S3, S5, S7, and S10
    • References
    Table S3
    List of vertebrate families assessed. Number of species, traded species and proportion of traded species per family.
    Table S5
    Predicted future traded species. Probability of a species being traded in the future based on body size, evolutionary distinctiveness, phylogenetic relatedness, and the proportion of species traded in respective families. All species that have above 50% probability of future trade for at least one assessment technique are provided.
    Table S7
    Summary of trade across global biogeographical regions. Proportion of traded species is relative to the total number of species in a region. Proportion of pet- or product-traded species is relative to the total number of traded species in a region. Note that some species can be traded as both pets and products. Realms classification follows Holt et al. (41), and biomes classification follows Olson et al. (40).
    Table S10
    Complete list of traded vertebrates (birds, mammals, amphibians and squamate reptiles). Trade types are indicates as NA or products and/or pets.

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