Shells of chambered nautilus (Nautilus spp. Linnaeus and Allonautilus spp. Ward and Saunders) are well-known collectibles, traded across the globe from their Indo-Pacific origins. Live animals and a variety of products made from shells are also traded internationally. In preparation for the 15th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the National Marine Fisheries’ Service (NMFS) were asked to propose listing the chambered nautilus in CITES Appendix-II. To evaluate such a listing, nautilus life history traits, conservation status, primary threats, and legal protections were examined in conjunction with known legal and illegal international trade in these taxa. Indications are that certain intrinsic life history traits (such as slow growth and delayed maturation) in combination with extrinsic pressures (such as habitat destruction and unregulated wild harvest) render chambered nautiluses vulnerable, at least locally, to overharvest and may increase their risk of extinction. However, biological and status information as well as trade, fishery, and industry data are insufficient to fully assess the impact of trade on these taxa. The special session on extant nautilus conservation, convened during the 8th International Symposium: Cephalopods - Present and Past (8ISCPP), provided an opportunity to work directly with many of the peer-acknowledged world nautilid experts to address existing knowledge gaps. Activities are underway to continue the assessment of this living fossil.