Illegal endangered wild cat trade near and far
In China two tigers were caught by capital city police in a taxi this past week! Is there something wong with this picture? After the tigers were confiscated, five people were arrested for suspected involvement in the illegal transport last week.
In Denver, Colorado two people received a 15-count felony indictment charging them with conspiracy, wildlife trafficking and firearms violations for the illegal trapping, killing and selling of bobcats and their pelts. Bobcats, whether alive or dead, are considered wildlife under both the Lacey Act and Colorado law.
November 2006 until March 2008, Bodnar and Anderson-Bodnar conspired to knowingly transport and sell bobcat and bobcat pelts in interstate commerce that were unlawfully trapped and killed without a license and using prohibited leghold traps in violation of state law. The two also conspired to knowingly submit false records and accounts of how the bobcats were trapped for tagging by Colorado wildlife officials.
In Vietnam, less than 50 tigers are left in their natural habitat. Tiger skin, teeth, meat and bones fetch high prices on the black market here.
In India. the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), a British-based organisation, showed photos it said were taken by a spy camera revealing the ‘rampant’ sale of tiger and white leopard skins, bones and claws in retail stores sold in China are smuggled from India via Nepal and the lack of enforcement of a ban on the trade is hobbling efforts by New Delhi to save the animal, it said.
Tigers attract huge sums of money in China and elsewhere in Asia, with their body parts used in traditional medicines and aphrodisiacs while their skins are used for furniture and decoration.
Tiger trade is prohibited internationally and also is banned domestically in many countries, including China − historically the largest market for tiger products. These bans have successfully shut down legal tiger trade and nearly extinguished demand. They must be reinforced, not undermined.
Progress is being made for tigers and other cats:
1. China’s 14-year tiger trade ban has been an overwhelming success in reducing trade and demand.
2. Russia’s tiger population and other wild tiger populations is recovering due to an international and country by country ban on their sale or trade.
3. When sufficent funds and political support are in place, traditional tiger conservation methods have worked.
4. In parts of India and in eastern Russia, the entire ecosystem is protected both habitat and prey, plus enforcing their anti-poaching efforts, has stabilized wild tiger populations.
5. Tiger bones are not needed or wanted for medicine in the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) community. Alternatives to tiger products are plentiful, validated by scientific research studies sponsored by the Government of China and embraced by TCM practitioners.
7. Native groups who traditionally have used tiger skins for their traditional dress are changing to silk brocade and other materials that are more in line with their religious beliefs.
Consciousness international, national and individual is turning in favor of protection of wild cats thanks to the dedicated work of many animal protection organization and individuals like you that refuse to purchase endangered or threatened species products.
Thank you-Mother Nature
Excerpts courtesy of http://www.reuters.com/article
Excerpts courtesy of bigcatnews.blogspot.com/two-colo-residents-indicted-for
Excerpts courtesy of http://www.hsi.org.au/?catID=547
Image courtesy of 1.bp.blogspot.com/s400/tigers+decapitated+in+hua+hin.jpg