The Endangered Species Act is the responsibility of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in the Department of the Interior and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)-Fisheries. For more information about the Endangered Species Act, go to: ESA website.
CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) is an international agreement between governments. Its job is to make sure that international trade in wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.
The species covered by CITES are listed in three categories or “Appendices”, according to how much protection they need.
Appendix l includes species threatened with extinction. Trade in these species is allowed only in exceptional cases.
Appendix II includes species not necessarily threatened with extinction, but in which trade must be controlled to protect their survival.
Appendix III includes species that are protected in at least one country, which has asked other CITES Parties for help in controlling their trade.
For more information about CITES, go to: CITES website.
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species provides the taxonomy, conservation status and distribution of plants and animals that have been studied using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria. This system is meant to decide the risk of extinction of endangered plants and animals. They use the listings Critically Endangered, Endangered and Vulnerable.