More than 2000 tigers killed and trafficked this century — report

 

 

More than 2 300 endangered tigers have been killed and illegally trafficked since the turn of the century, according to a report published Tuesday, urging more action to protect the giant cats.

With an average of more than 120 illegally trafficked tigers seized each year — which amounts to over two each week — since year 2000, conservation group Traffic warned there was little sign of respite for the species.

Report author Kanitha Krishnasamy, who heads Traffic’s Southeast Asia operations, said the numbers were deeply concerning.

“It looks like we are losing this fight,” she told AFP.

In 1900, more than 100 000 tigers were estimated to roam the planet. But that fell to a record low of 3 200 globally in 2010.

Since then, population numbers have inched upwards, but there are still estimated to be fewer than 3 900 tigers left in the wild.

“This pernicious trafficking,evidenced by the continuously high number of whole skins, whole animals — both dead and alive — and bones is testament to the ongoing demand for Tiger parts,” Krishnasamy said.

“The time for talking is over: words must be turned into action to prevent further Tiger loss,” she said in a statement.

Traffic, which campaigns to protect endangered animals and help governments catch those who trade in their parts, published a new analysis looking at 19-years of tiger seizure data from across the globe.

It found that an estimated total equivalent to 2 359 individual tigers were seized from 2000 to 2018 across 32 countries and territories.

Skins are the single most frequently seized tiger part, with on average 58 whole tiger skins seized each year, the report found, also noting a clear increase in seizures of whole animals, both dead and alive.

‘Undermine conservation efforts’

The study also highlighted the growing role breeding centres play in fuelling the illegal tiger trade, especially in Southeast Asia.

The tiger farm industry often argues the trade in captive animals helps to relieve the pressure on wild felines, but wildlife groups argue it reduces the stigma around buying the animals or their body parts and could create new markets for them.

More than half of tiger seizures in Thailand and a third of those in Vietnam over the past two decades were identified as coming from captive breeding facilities, Traffic said.

“Seizures of tigers from captive facilities continue and serve as a stark reminder that such facilities seriously undermine conservation efforts to safeguard this species and provide opportunities for laundering and other illegal activities,” said senior Traffic crime analyst Ramacandra Wong in the statement.

Tuesday’s report was released as parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) meet in Geneva to evaluate and fine-tune the treaty that manages trade in more than 35,000 species of plants and animals.

Tiger farms are on the agenda, with the report authors calling for CITES to monitor facilities to ensure they are not helping feed the illegal trade chain.

© Agence France-Presse

Agency
External source
Advertisting

Hosni Mubarak is dead, but the Egypt he built is...

Despite the efforts of the Arab Spring, Egypt is still led by a military dictatorship made in Mubarak’s image

Inside the Security Branch: Torture between brandy and boerewors

A former SB operative, Paul Erasmus, talks about the torture of a young trade unionist, Neil Aggett, and the machinations at John Vorster Square
Advertising

Press Releases

South Africa’s education system is broken and unequal, and must be fixed without further delay

The Amnesty International report found that the South African government continues to miss its own education upgrading targets

Business travel industry generates billions

Meetings Africa is ready to take advantage of this lucrative opportunity

Conferences connect people to ideas

The World Expo and Meetings Africa are all about stimulating innovation – and income

SAB Zenzele Kabili B-BBEE share scheme

New scheme to be launched following the biggest B-BBEE FMCG payout in South Africa’s history

TFSAs are the gymnasts of the retirement savings world

The idea is to get South Africans to save, but it's best to do your research first to find out if a TFSA is really suited to your needs

Achieving the litmus test of social relevance

The HSS Awards honours scholarly works based on their social relevance and contribution to the humanities and social sciences

Making sense of tax-free savings and investment

Have you made the most of your tax-free investment contributions?

Response to the report of the independent assessors

VUT welcomes the publishing of the report of the independent assessors to investigate concerns of poor governance, leadership, management, corruption and fraud at the university.