Ban the Trade in Seahorses

  • by: Animal Advocates
  • target: Convention for International Trade of Endangered Species

Very little is known about the 47 species of seahorse. Insufficient information and data about the species makes the risk of extinction impossible to assess. We do not know how many die each year, how many are being born- or how many are used as souvenirs.

We DO know, however, that coral reefs and seagrass beds are deteriorating. Habitat degradation and pollution are reducing viable habitats for seahorses. It is also often accidentally caught as bycatch in the shrimp-trawling industry.

Millions of seahorses are caught each year and sold for use in Traditional Chinese Medicine. In 2001, the global consumption of seahorses was estimated at 25 million seahorses (over 70 metric tonnes). Today, almost a third of the seahorses sold in China are prepackaged for traditional medicine, and contain juvinille seahorses because of the declining availability of the preferred large seahorses.

The declining availability of large, mature seahorses should be an indicator that the overall population is in decline. We ask for a ban in trading of the seahorse until more information can determine if they are endangered and at risk for extinction.

CITES Secretariat
International Environment House
11 Chemin des Anemones
CH-1219 Châtelaine, Geneva
Switzerland
Tel: +41-(0)22-917-81-39/40
Fax: +41-(0)22-797-34-17
Email: info@cites.org

Very little is known about the 47 species of seahorse. Insufficient information and data about the species makes the risk of extinction impossible to assess. We do not know how many die each year, how many are being born- or how many are used as souvenirs.


We DO know, however, that coral reefs and seagrass beds are deteriorating. Habitat degradation and pollution are reducing viable habitats for seahorses. It is also often accidentally caught as bycatch in the shrimp-trawling industry.


Millions of seahorses are caught each year and sold for use in Traditional Chinese Medicine. In 2001, the global consumption of seahorses was estimated at 25 million seahorses (over 70 metric tonnes). Today, almost a third of the seahorses sold in China are prepackaged for traditional medicine, and contain juvinille seahorses because of the declining availability of the preferred large seahorses.


The declining availability of large, mature seahorses should be an indicator that the overall population is in decline. We ask for a ban in trading of the seahorse until more information can determine if they are endangered and at risk for extinction.

Sign Petition

privacy policy

By signing, you accept Care2's terms of service.

Having problems signing this? Let us know.