Feb 062017
 
POLL: Should the export of snakes to zoos and pet shops be banned?

Kenya has banned the export of various snake species, including the African rock python, to zoos and pet shops around the world after reports of animal abuse and snakes being sold on the black market for their meat and skins. The trafficking of the endangered snakes by cartels is also having a negative impact on […]

Dec 292016
 
Wildlife for sale: Jaguars are the new trafficking victims in Bolivia

Bolivia introduced a general and indefinite ban on the wildlife trade two decades ago, but this measure has failed to stop the trafficking of wild animals. Birds, monkeys, turtles and reptiles that are in high demand as pets remain particularly vulnerable to wildlife crime. In recent years, jaguars (Panthera onca) have also become victims of […]

Dec 252016
 
Wildlife for sale: An illegal activity out of control in Peru?

Peru is one of the most biodiverse nations on earth, home to one-tenth of the Amazon rainforest and other ecosystems. But its species are sought by collectors around the world and there is a thriving domestic trade in wildlife which together forms one of the country’s most profitable illicit economies running parallel to its impressively […]

Dec 152016
 
POLL: Should the illegal trade in hippo teeth be stopped?

Kampala, Uganda – Investigators posing as buyers lured the suspects to a lodge near Buliisa, a town in western Uganda, as night set in. The two men arrived by motorbike with the contraband concealed inside a nylon sack. “They requested for me to take [the sack] inside a room,” one of the men, Fred Byenkya, […]

Dec 012016
 
How wildlife may fare under Trump

What a president will do for wildlife has never been much of a campaign issue. Debates focus on national security, trade, economics, and to a lesser degree in this election cycle, on the environment. Wildlife, however, plays a part in all those concerns. Take, for example, the illegal wildlife trade. It’s a multibillion-dollar business that […]

Oct 052016
 
POLL: Should the illegal trade in hornbill ivory be stopped?

A virtually unknown ivory poaching crisis is rapidly driving one of the world’s most spectacular birds to extinction, a global wildlife summit has heard. The helmeted hornbill, found mainly in Indonesia, Borneo and Thailand, has a solid red beak which sells as a “red ivory” on the black market, for several times the price of […]

Oct 042016
 
Revealed: the criminals making millions from illegal wildlife trafficking

A major investigation into global wildlife crime today names for the first time key traffickers and links their illegal trade to corrupt officials at the highest levels of one Asian country. The investigation, published by the Guardian, exposes the central role of international organised crime groups in mutilating and killing tens of thousands of animals […]

Aug 022016
 
How to catch a poacher using fake eggs

Sometimes life really does imitate art. In the fourth season of the hit TV show, Breaking Bad, police put GPS devices on barrels of methylamine to try and track the show’s protagonists to their meth lab. Inspired by the episode, Kim Williams-Guillen, a conservationist with Paso Pacifico, decided to take the concept one step further: […]

Jun 172016
 
POLL: Should tiger farming and trade in tiger parts be banned?

A week ago it cost 600 baht (£11.50) to visit the tiger temple in Thailand’s Kanchanaburi province, west of the capital, Bangkok. Tourists moved by the spectacle of such splendid creatures living side by side with human beings could also pay the saffron-robed Buddhist monks an extra £15 to help feed the cubs, or to […]

Feb 052016
 
POLL: Should Yahoo be sanctioned for aiding the slaughter of elephants?

Internet company Yahoo has been accused of aiding in the slaughter of elephants by allowing the trade of ivory on its Japanese auction site. Activist network Avaaz has launched a petition calling for an end to Yahoo’s “bloody secret” of permitting sales of ivory. The petition, which has more than 1m signatures, urges Yahoo chief […]

Jan 152016
 
POLL: Should the international trade in geckos be stopped?

For many species threatened by the illegal wildlife trafficking, such as rhinos, elephants, tigers, and bears, debates persist as to whether a legal trade in their parts and products can reduce smuggling. But increasing evidence suggests that a legal trade instead acts as a conduit for the illegal trade. For instance, recent studies showed that […]

Jan 012016
 
Bolivia’s domestic parrots seen as “crop pests”

A new shipment of illegally trafficked parrots arrives at the Los Pozos market in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia. The sellers and middlemen are approached and questioned. The species, age and place of capture are noted down. This isn’t an enforcement sting, far from it; it’s research. The year was 2004, and scientists were […]

Nov 302015
 
POLL: Could a referendum to ban ivory sales be a model for other countries?

Voters in Washington state sent a strong message to the world on November 3 when they passed the country’s first ever comprehensive state ban on commerce in endangered animal species. The Washington Animal Trafficking Initiative 1401 (I-1401) prohibits the purchase, sale, and distribution of ten endangered species groups and their parts. It includes not only […]