United States Code
USC most recently checked for updates: Jun 02, 2023
For the purposes of this chapter:
The term “breed” means to facilitate propagation or reproduction (whether intentionally or negligently), or to fail to prevent propagation or reproduction.
The term “fish or wildlife” means any wild animal, whether alive or dead, including without limitation any wild mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian, fish, mollusk, crustacean, arthropod, coelenterate, or other invertebrate, whether or not bred, hatched, or born in captivity, and includes any part, product, egg, or offspring thereof.
The term “import” means to land on, bring into, or introduce into, any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, whether or not such landing, bringing, or introduction constitutes an importation within the meaning of the customs laws of the United States.
The term “Indian tribal law” means any regulation of, or other rule of conduct enforceable by, any Indian tribe, band, or group but only to the extent that the regulation or rule applies within Indian country as defined in section 1151 of title 18.
The terms “law,” “treaty,” “regulation,” and “Indian tribal law” mean laws, treaties, regulations or Indian tribal laws which regulate the taking, possession, importation, exportation, transportation, or sale of fish or wildlife or plants.
The term “person” includes any individual, partnership, association, corporation, trust, or any officer, employee, agent, department, or instrumentality of the Federal Government or of any State or political subdivision thereof, or any other entity subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
The terms “plant” and “plants” mean any wild member of the plant kingdom, including roots, seeds, parts, or products thereof, and including trees from either natural or planted forest stands.
The terms “plant” and “plants” exclude—
common cultivars, except trees, and common food crops (including roots, seeds, parts, or products thereof);
a scientific specimen of plant genetic material (including roots, seeds, germplasm, parts, or products thereof) that is to be used only for laboratory or field research; and
any plant that is to remain planted or to be planted or replanted.
The exclusions made by subparagraphs (B) and (C) of paragraph (2) do not apply if the plant is listed—
in an appendix to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (27 UST 1087; TIAS 8249);
as an endangered or threatened species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.); or
pursuant to any State law that provides for the conservation of species that are indigenous to the State and are threatened with extinction.
The term “prohibited wildlife species” means any live species of lion, tiger, leopard, cheetah, jaguar, or cougar or any hybrid of such species.
The term “Secretary” means, except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Commerce, as program responsibilities are vested pursuant to the provisions of Reorganization Plan Numbered 4 of 1970 (84 Stat. 2090); except that with respect to the provisions of this chapter which pertain to the importation or exportation of plants, the term also means the Secretary of Agriculture.
The term “State” means any of the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, and any other territory, commonwealth, or possession of the United States.
The term “taken” means captured, killed, or collected and, with respect to a plant, also means harvested, cut, logged, or removed.
The term “taking” means the act by which fish, wildlife, or plants are taken.
The term “transport” means to move, convey, carry, or ship by any means, or to deliver or receive for the purpose of movement, conveyance, carriage, or shipment.
(Pub. L. 97–79, § 2,
Nov. 16, 1981, 95 Stat. 1073; Pub. L. 108–191, § 2, Dec. 19, 2003, 117 Stat. 2871; Pub. L. 110–234, title VIII, § 8204(a), May 22, 2008, 122 Stat. 1291; Pub. L. 110–246, § 4(a), title VIII, § 8204(a), June 18, 2008, 122 Stat. 1664, 2052; Pub. L. 117–243, § 2(a), Dec. 20, 2022, 136 Stat. 2336.)
cite as: 16 USC 3371