Vietnamese consuming wild animal meat & blood as sexual tonics, driving some species to extinction
... Many Vietnamese men, never being shy about embracing supposed sexual tonics, often eat the reptile more popularly known as the Asian or Chinese water dragon (Physignathus cocincinus).
... A waiter brought a struggling reptile to the table, while nearby guests peered in interest at the thrashing water dragon. After sizing up the lizard, the man decided on a pair, one to be eaten raw with vegetables and the other to be roasted.
With head duly dispatched, the dead animal was drained of blood with the liquid trickling into a prepared glasses of rice wine. Then the heart, bowels, and gall-bladder were extracted and placed ceremoniously into a glass for the guests to admire.
After a short 15-minute hiatus, the four diners were presented with another bloody glass full of alcohol and two dishes comprised of the dead lizard.
Despite health warnings that such lizards are responsible for the circulation of infectious diseases through the eating of their blood sausages or drinking its blood, many restaurants in Ho Chi Minh City have caved into customer demand for the unlucky reptile.
Indonesia: Governor asks president to let timber firms drain peat in his province
The West Kalimantan governor wants to exempt timber firms in the Indonesian province from a national ban on peatland drainage, drawing the ire of green groups who say such a policy shift could spell the end of one of the Bornean orangutan’s last strongholds, the Sungai Putri rainforest.
Governor Cornelis, who like many Indonesians goes by one name, outlined his request in a letter to the president dated Apr. 25 — days after the Ministry of Environment and Forestry sanctioned a plantation firm for building an illegal drainage canal through Sungai Putri.
“Companies will lose confidence to invest in the forestry sector,” Cornelis wrote to President Joko Widodo, popularly known as Jokowi. An exemption was needed, he argued, “in order to maintain a conducive and comfortable investment climate.”
Jokowi introduced the ban in the wake of the devastating 2015 forest and land fires, which burned an area the size of Vermont and sickened half a million people. The country’s vast peat swamp zones have been widely drained and dried for agriculture, rendering them highly flammable and prone to emitting huge amounts of greenhouse gases.