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India: Pangolin scales export racket busted in Odisha
With the arrest of four persons, police today unearthed an inter-state pangolin shell export racket at Buguda in Odisha's Ganjam district.
Over 10kg of pangolin shells were seized from their possession, police said ...
* learn more about the illegal trade in pangolins in 'Armoured against predators – except wildlife criminals' at ht.ly/PdUq9
"We nabbed the four when they were moving at the outskirts of the town. The pangolin shells were found from their bags during search. The shells were packed in separate pockets," said inspector-in charge of Buguda police station Ranjan Kumar Dey.
The accused persons were suspected to be members of a racket to export the pangolin shells, he said, adding, "We are investigating to ascertain the place from where they procure such quantities of shells."
Pangolin shells are in high demand in foreign countries, particularly China, Vietnam and Cambodia where it is believed to be a cure for medical conditions related to blood circulation, cancer and lactation problems.
Image: Scales of a pangolin, by Joxerra Aihartza ... See MoreSee Less
2 hours ago ·
India: Seventh case of rhino poaching in North Bengal wildlife sanctuary
The carcass of a rhino was recovered in the Chilapata range of the Jaldapara Wild Life sanctuary in Jalpaiguri on Saturday.
The horn of the rhino was missing and evidently cut off. Top forest officials confirmed that this is the seventh case of rhino poaching in the Wildlife sanctuary in the past one and half years.
The seventh victim of the poachers was detected on Saturday morning when a group of forest guards were patrolling the core of the forest areas. The carcass was detected with its horn cut off from the base. It was of a full grown rhino.
Forest officials said that the forest patrolling could not be done in the past three four days because of incessant rains and the poachers gang took advantage of this.
Poachers gang had been particularly active in the North Bengal forests for the past two years and apart from seven rhinos, at least nine tuskers have also been killed under mysterious circumstances during this period. The tusks were all removed when the carcass were detected.
Unfortunately every time the forest department lodged FIRs against unknown persons but it had evidently failed to make a breakthrough in detecting the gang members. Experienced forest officials wanting anonymity said that these are inter-state gang, operating in Assam, North East and also in North Bengal forests.
Full story at indianexpress.com/article/india/west-bengal/seventh-case-of-rhino-poaching-in-north-bengal-wildli...
#India #rhino #elephants #poaching
Image: Rhinoceros in India's Kaziranga park, by Satish Krishnamurthy ... See MoreSee Less
2 hours ago ·
Zimbabwe: Young elephants 'trafficked' to China
A wildlife saga that has sparked international outrage took a new twist yesterday when 24 elephant calves were flown from Harare to China.
They were among a group of 36 calves taken from their herds in Zimbabwe's flagship Hwange National Park and held at a holding facility since August.
Conservationists from across the world have staunchly opposed the capture and sale of the calves to zoos and safari parks in China, which have poor animal welfare records.
Johnny Rodrigues, director of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, said he was "gutted" after learning that the elephants were leaving Zimbabwe.
"Three of four baby Hwange elephants shipped to a Chinese zoo and a safari park in 2012 are no longer alive, and the fourth is suffering from depression and ill-health."
Rodrigues said he fears the latest shipment will form part of a mass sale of elephants and lions caught in Zimbabwe reserves to Chinese enterprises, including circuses.
"Our government is robbing us and our future generations, and China is plundering Africa's heritage ...
"The government must be held accountable. The facilities in China have shocking histories of animal abuse, and poor animal husbandry and veterinary care."
The loading for transport was under tight security enforced by military and national intelligence officials, out of sight of the public, at about 7am yesterday.
The Zimbabwean government, which is in huge debt to China and unable to pay Zimbabwe National Parks employees, has brushed aside criticism, saying that the animals must pay for themselves.
#Zimbabwe #Africa #China #elephants
Image: Zimbabwe exported eight elephants, including this male, to China in 2012. Most are now reported to be dead (c) Chian Zoo Watch ... See MoreSee Less
4 hours ago ·