Protection of Asian Wildlife Species
Hundreds of animals seized in operation targeting wildlife trafficking across Asia
LYON, France – A five-month long INTERPOL-coordinated operation targeting wildlife trafficking in tigers and other big cats across Asia has resulted in the seizure of hundreds of animals and more than 160 arrests.
Involving 13 countries, Operation PAWS (Protection of Asian Wildlife Species) also focused on lesser known species also in high demand by the black market, such as bears and pangolins. Wildlife traders using the internet and social media in certain countries were also investigated.
Among the live animals recovered were tigers, leopards, bears, monkeys, red pandas, lions and crocodiles in addition to 3,500 kg of elephant ivory, 280kg of pangolin scales, rhino horns and more than 4,000 kg of red sandalwood. A large number of turtles, tortoises and birds were also seized across a wide range of countries indicating a high demand for these species.
Designed and developed by the involved member countries as a collaborative law enforcement response to wildlife crime, Operation PAWS was coordinated by INTERPOL’s Environmental security unit as part of Project Predator, in addition to support from the International Consortium on Combating Wildlife Crime (ICCWC).
Aimed at supporting and enhancing the governance and law enforcement capacity for the conservation of Asian big cats, INTERPOL’s Project Predator is primarily funded by the United States Agency for International Development.
The 13 countries which participated in Operation PAWS which was conducted between July and November were Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Russia, Thailand and Vietnam. It was also supported by Australia, Canada and the USA.
Thai man nabbed with 16 tiger cubs in truck October 27, 2012 Enlarge Rescued tiger cubs at a police station in Vietnam’s Ha Tinh province last month. A Thai man has been arrested with 16 tiger cubs in his pick-up truck while driving near the kingdom’s border with Laos, police said Saturday. A Thai man has been arrested with 16 tiger cubs in his pick-up truck while driving near the kingdom’s border with Laos, police said Saturday.Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2012-10-thai-nabbed-tiger-cubs-truck.html#jCp
California Fish and Game officials patrol online waters for exotic-animal sales
PLEASANTON — A word of warning for Craigslist posters and social media aficionados hoping to hawk or show off their exotic species: California Fish and Game is watching.
In an effort to protect the state’s ecosystems, the agency’s game wardens routinely troll the waters of Craigslist and other social media for everything from Bengal tigers to ferrets.
“People call our headquarters and say, ‘I spotted this on Craigslist’ and say, ‘I thought this was illegal,’” said Patrick Foy, who has been with Fish and Game for the past 16 years, including the past six as a warden. “We might contact a seller and say we are interested and make the buy and then bust them like they do with drug dealers.”
Foy is one of 350 sworn game wardens and has encountered everything from a drug dealer’s pet tiger to a guy who posted a picture of himself on Facebook posing with his pet fox
HANOI, Vietnam — Police in central Vietnam say they have found the carcasses of two endangered wild tigers in the trunk of a car that was stopped for speeding.
Police in Quang Binh province say they detained the two men in the car for questioning after finding the tiger carcasses Monday. The men told police they were hired by an unknown man to transport the carcasses to nearby Quang Tri province.Tiger bones are used In Vietnam to make a medicine which is used as a traditional pain killer. It sells for about $1,000 for 100 grams, or several hundred dollars an ounce. (more…)