Effective June 12, 2013: Madagascar's populations of Dalbergia spp. (Madagascan rosewoods) and Diospyros spp. (Madagascan ebonies) were listed in Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) at the 16th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CITES (CoP16). For additional information on this listing, please read this letter to U.S. importers/re-exporters of rosewood and ebony.

Import and Export Requirements for Wood & Other Tree Products

Determine how a tree species is listed to find which parts, derivatives, or products are included in the listing and require CITES permits and certificates.  To find out if your species of timber is listed under CITES and if so, how it is regulated, go to the CITES Species Database.  Once you are there, you may search by scientific name or common name. For further instructions on how to navigate the Species Database, visit our Species Information page.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) is responsible for issuing permits for the import, export, and re-export of CITES and ESA-listed species.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), along with the DHS Customs and Border Protection, is responsible for inspection and enforcement for CITES plant shipments, including timber. 

For information specifically on musicial instruments made with CITES listed woods, please view our factsheet pdf. To learn more about exporting muscial instruments made from pre-Convention material, including Brazilian rosweood, to the European Union, click here pdf.



Document or website


Implementation for timber species

Resolution on CITES timber

Import/Re-export Procedures

Ports. CITES-listed timber species must be imported and exported through designated ports.

U.S. timber ports of entry/exit pdf


APHIS is the contact office for information on plant clearance procedures.  Note: The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) inspects and clears shipments of dead CITES plant materials (e.g., timber) imported into the United States.  APHIS inspects and clears shipments for the import of live CITES plants and the export and re-export of both live CITES plants and dead CITES plant material.

Please be sure to get your CITES document validated by APHIS prior to leaving with your timber and always keep a copy of the validated CITES permit in your records.

APHIS CITES timber manual pdf

Bigleaf Mahogany Import/Export

CITES Notification No. 2003/070 on Implementation of the Appendix-II listing of Swietenia macrophylla.

November 12, 2003 Implementation Notification pdf


Trade data

U.S. Trade in Bigleaf Mahogany pdf

For general information on CITES permit requirements, click here pdf.

If you are exporting timber, please complete application form 3-200-32 pdf. Submit a completed and signed application form with documentation showing how the timber was legally acquired (and all transfer documentation) and copies of any relevant validated CITES documents to the Division of Management Authority.   

If, after reading this information, you are unclear about the permitting process, please feel free to contact us.