Over 40,900 species – including roughly 6,610 species of animals and 34,310 species of plants – are protected by CITES against over-exploitation through international trade. They are listed in the three CITES Appendices. The species are grouped in the Appendices according to how threatened they are by international trade. They include some whole groups, such as primates, cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises), sea turtles, parrots, corals, cacti and orchids. But in some cases only a subspecies or geographically separate population of a species (for example the population of just one country) is listed. The table below shows the approximate numbers of species that are included in the CITES Appendices as of 23 February 2023*. The abbreviation "spp." is used to denote species; "sspp." for subspecies; “var.” for varieties; "popns" for populations.
|Appendix I||Appendix II||Appendix III|
|Mammals||334 spp. (incl. 21 popns) + 14 sspp. (incl. 4 popns)||523 spp. (incl. 22 popns) + 9 sspp. (incl. 4 popns)||46 spp. + 11 sspp.|
|Birds||156 spp. (incl. 2 popns) + 5 sspp.||1294 spp. (incl. 1 popn) + 6 sspp.||60 spp. (incl. 31 popns)|
|Reptiles||105 spp. (incl. 7 popns) + 4 sspp.||870 spp. (incl. 6 popns)||215 spp. (incl. 1 popn) + 8 sspp.|
|Amphibians||24 spp.||351 spp.||5 spp.|
|Fish||16 spp.||224 spp.||19 spp. (incl. 10 popns)|
|Invertebrates||69 spp. + 7 sspp.||2193 spp. + 1 sspp.||27 spp. + 3 sspp.|
|FAUNA TOTAL||704 spp. + 30 sspp.||5466 spp. + 16 sspp.||372 spp. + 22 sspp.|
|FLORA||395 spp. + 4 sspp. + 12 var.||33764 spp. (incl. 110 popns)||134 spp. + 1 var.|
|GRAND TOTAL||1099 spp. + 34 sspp. + 12 var.||39230 spp. + 16 sspp.||506 spp. + 22 sspp. + 1 var.|
Any type of wild plant or animal may be included in the list of species protected by CITES [see Resolution Conf. 9.24 (Rev. CoP17) and the range of wildlife species included in the Appendices extends from leeches to lions and from pine trees to pitcher plants. While the more charismatic creatures, such as bears and whales, may be the better known examples of CITES species, the most numerous groups include many less popularized plants and animals, such as aloes, corals, mussels and frogs.
Please note that these numbers are approximate because there are no agreed lists for some of the higher taxa.