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Institute of

HF Wood Research


Update of the database CITESwoodID

Preparation of a HTLM-Version of the database CITESwoodID - Update 2013/2014

Important trade-timbers, e.g. true mahagony are protected according to the CITES-regulations (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species). The trade of the protected timber is subjected to authorization or strongly prohibited and requires a clear identification of the wood taxa.

Background and Objective

The first version of the database CITESwoodID was developed in 2005 at the Thünen-Institute of Wood Research in response to a proposal by the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN). Since 2005 the database has been established as an essential instrument for the practical identification of CITES-protected timber. The database is regularly presented and exercised to persons involved in controlling trade of wood and wood products under consideration of CITES regulations on national and international training courses. In order to facilitate effective controls of the protected timber, it is necessary to adjust the database regularly according to current CITES-listings. Since the last update (version 2008) important commercial timber, especially wood species of the genera Diospyros (Ebony) and Dalbergia (rosewood), are newly listed or classified into a higher protection status. These new listings require the generation of the new update (version 2014). Furthermore, a HTML version of the database should be programmed which can be used online by the enforcement authorities.



Update of the database CITESwoodID. The following listed CITES-species are newly included in the database

  • Aniba rosaeodora
  • Aquilaria spp., Gyrinops spp.
  • Araucaria araucana
  • Dalbergia cochinchinensis
  • Dalbergia spp. (Malagasy populations)
  • Diospyros spp. (Malagasy populations),
  • Podocarpus neriifolius, P. parlatorei
  • Pterocarpus santalinus
  • Taxus chinensis, Taxus spp.

The update of the database requires a detailed anatomical and structural description of the newly listed wood species in four languages (de, en, es, fr) and the preparation of macroscopic images (10-fold magnification) of the longitudinal and transverse sections. Furthermore, important information on trading, such as nomenclature (botanical name, local trade name, abbreviations) and geographical descriptions (taxonomy and distribution) are provided. The update of the database includes also the description of important commercial timbers which are often mistaken with the CITES-protected timber due to a very similar appearance and/or wood anatomical pattern. In total, 46 individual (structural) characteristics are described and linked to the computerized identification of the listed timber in the database CITESwoodID.


Links and Downloads

Funding Body

  • Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)
    (national, öffentlich)
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