Will China Burn Stockpiles of Tiger Skins to Show Good Faith?

Avatar BCR | October 23, 2009 1 View 0 Likes 0 Ratings

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Please see the article below from China.  It looks like destruction of stockpiles of tiger products will not be too much to ask.  🙂



Members of an animal protection team at the Hoh Xil Nature Reserve 
yesterday burn Tibetan antelope hides that were confiscated from 
poachers. The reserve, which lies on the border of the Tibet Autonomous 
Region and Qinghai Province, protects the rare wildlife of the 
Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.

ANIMAL protection authorities in northwest China's Qinghai Province 
yesterday destroyed 2,282 Tibetan antelope hides confiscated from 
poachers to show their resolve in combating the killing of the rare species.

"The hides were seized from poachers over the past 10 years," said 
Cedain Zhou, director of the Hoh Xil Nature Reserve Administration. "We 
want to show our unswerving attitude against poaching."

He said the move was the largest of its kind since 1998 when China began 
coming down hard on armed poachers in the region. Over the past decade, 
more than 4,000 Tibetan antelope skins have been confiscated by the 

Tibetan antelopes are targeted by poachers because they produce the 
finest wool in the world, known as shahtoosh, a Persian word meaning 
"king of wool."

Each hair of the Tibetan antelope is around six times thinner than the 
average human hair. A shahtoosh shawl, extremely lightweight and warm, 
requires the wool from three to four antelopes and may fetch up to 
US$11,000 on the global market.

Beginning in the late 1980s, shahtoosh shawls became high fashion in 
Europe and the United States, which fueled a black market and led to a 
slump in the population of Tibetan antelopes from 200,000 to 20,000 in 1997.

To curb the rampant slaughter of Tibetan antelopes and save them from 
extinction, the Chinese government set up the Hoh Xil Nature Reserve in 
1995 and upgraded it to a state-listed reserve in 1997.

The reserve, in the hinterlands of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, covers 
45,000-square kilometers and lies at an average altitude of 4,600 meters.

Thanks to the country's anti-poaching efforts, no armed poaching has 
been reported since 2006 in Hoh Xil, and the population of Tibetan 
antelope in this region has grown to around 60,000, Cedain Zhou said.

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