Leopards are Asia’s most trafficked big cat, with more than 4,900 seized from illegal trade in Asia since 2000 – but despite this, new evidence indicates the Government of China is issuing permits to trade and use their bones to produce health tonics and used to produce traditional ‘medicines’
The Chinese Government has permitted a commercial trade in 1,230.5 kg of leopard bone between pharmaceutical companies which represents the bones of more than 100 leopards. Widespread trade in leopard bone wine in China is concerning as it drives poaching and decimates wild populations of leopards and other big cats.
The killing of more than 50 lions on a South African farm last week has laid bare the reality of this officially sanctioned trade. Bloemfontein Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals followed up a complaint of two lions being kept in temporary containers found what was described as a “lion slaughterhouse"
Not satisfied with pushing wild tigers to the brink of extinction, the Chinese ‘tonic wine’ industry is now driving demand for leopard bones. We are appalled that leopard bone products are still being promoted in China. The use of big cat bones to produce ‘tonic’ wines is a major driver of illegal trade and poaching
A court in Chancheng, Guangdong province, in China has convicted an individual under the charge of illegal transport and sale of endangered wildlife. Mo sold tonic wine containing wildlife products such as tiger bone. We applaud the investigation and the issuing of such a strong sentence for wildlife crime in China.