Where have all the pangolin gone? One Way Ticket to China … But Pangolins are “Endangered”

Pangolin are greatly prized in Chinese traditional medicine and Chinese restaurants…

Pangolins are endangered: In November 2010, pangolins were added to the Zoological Society of London’s list of genetically distinct and endangered mammals. All eight species of pangolin are classified by the IUCN as threatened to extinction, while two are classified as critically endangered.

Pangolin is a frequently traded item in the black market because it is used in traditional Chinese medicine

Pangolin’s flesh and scales among the most prized items on wildlife black market

NEIL KEENE, The Sunday Telegraph

FOR a creature at the top of the global hit-list for black market trafficking, the humble pangolin sure knows how to keep a low profile.

As Taronga zookeeper Simon Brown pointed out, most people have never even heard of the scaly little mammals, and fewer still know much about their plight in the wild.

It’s a quiet tragedy, given the dire straits the four Asian species now find themselves in, with the pangolin’s flesh and scales among the most prized items on the wildlife black market.

Many have never heard of the scaly little mammal.

The pangolin’s flesh and scales among the most prized items on the wildlife black market.
Mr Brown, who won a fellowship last year to study pangolin conservation, said poachers typically trapped pangolins in their home habitat in the rainforests of South East Asia, transporting them illegally across borders for use in “traditional” Chinese medicine.

“Their scales are made of keratin, much like our fingernails, but they’re used for all sorts of things from curing the common cold to ­improving a mother’s yield when she is breastfeeding,” he said.

There is not a shred of scientific evidence to support claims of any such benefits.

Pangolin meat is also considered a delicacy in some parts of Asia, putting them at further risk of being hunted.

The animals are used regularly in Chinese medicine.

The meat of the pangolin is a delicacy in some parts of Asia.

The animals are used regularly in Chinese medicine.

The meat of the pangolin is a delicacy in some parts of Asia.

Mr Brown said a recent anti-poaching operation had uncovered a haul of more than seven tonnes of scales ready to be sold in China and Vietnam.

“It’s really hard to get a grasp on how many are left in the wild due to their elusive nature and because they are nocturnal,” Mr Brown said.

“But it is believed that over the last 15 years more than 50 per cent have been wiped out.”

Currently, no zoos in Australia keep ­pangolins but Taronga is involved in their conservation in South East Asia and has selected the Sunda pangolin as one of its ­“legacy species” in 2016, locking in support for the next 10 years.

Taronga Zoo’s Simon Brown won a fellowship last year to study pangolin conservation.

Taronga Zoo’s Simon Brown won a fellowship last year to study pangolin conservation.

The Sunday Telegraph and Daily Telegraph are celebrating Taronga Zoo’s 100 year birthday by giving readers the chance to collect and build each of Zoo’s 10 legacy species. Starting Sunday September 11 to Tuesday September 20 collect the Wild Bunch 2 paper animals proudly presented by ANZ free when you buy the paper.



Hundreds of frozen pangolins seized from Indonesian’s house

Indonesian police display 657 dead and frozen pangolins in Surabaya, East Java, on Thursday after thwarting the smuggling operations of these threatened with extinction mammals. (AFP)

SURABAYA: Indonesian authorities have seized more than 650 critically endangered pangolins found hidden in freezers and arrested a man for allegedly breaking wildlife protection laws, police said Friday.

Police discovered the pangolins, known as “scaly anteaters,” when they raided a house in Jombang district on the main island of Java after local residents became suspicious about the large number of freezers in the property.

A total of 657 pangolins, which are consumed as a luxury dish in China and used in traditional medicine, were found wrapped in plastic and stored in five large freezers, East Java province police spokesman Raden Prabowo Argo Yuwono told AFP.

The house owner, a 55-year-old man, was arrested.

He could face five years in prison and a fine of 100 million rupiah ($7,500) for breaking wildlife protection laws.


In this April 13, 2013 photo released by the Philippine Coast Guard, an officer of the Philippine Coast Guard holds a frozen pangolin or scaly anteater on board a Chinese vessel that ran into the Tubbataha coral reef, a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site, in the southwestern Philippines. Authorities discovered more than 10,000 kilograms (22,000 pounds) of meat from the protected species inside the Chinese vessel F/N Min Long Yu. (AP Photo/ Philippine Coast Guard)


Endangered green turtles crawl toward Honda Bay in the Philippines, after being tagged and released into the wild.  Photo by Romeo Gacad/AFP/Getty Images

Chinese nationals are routinely arrested for harvesting rare species and animals that will bring a big pay off in China….

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: