A state-affiliated wildlife shelter in China has been accused of secretly dissecting the bodies of endangered tigers before selling them as products to make profits.
The Qinhuangdao Wildlife Rescue under the China Wildlife Conservation Association allegedly sold the endangered animals’ fur for £79,000 per piece and used their bones to make a traditional tonic aimed to boost sexual performance, a source said.
The centre directors are said to have served tiger meat dishes as exotic delicacies to Chinese officials who would turn a blind eye on the organisation’s shadowy business.
The claims were received as anonymous tips by the China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF), which then shared it Tuesday on Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter.
The Qinhuangdao Wildlife Rescue, located in north China’s Hebei Province, was founded in 2000 by the China Wildlife Conservation Association, a non-profit national organisation approved by the State Council in 1983.
According to the whistle-blowers, the shelter has kept over 10,000 wild animals to be sold, butchered, even consumed in order to generate profits for the past two decades.
Some wild animals rescued by the centre were said to be killed just to be made into specimens.
The organisation allegedly lied to the authorities about disposing the centre’s dead wild animals before turning the corpses into products for sale.
Ren Jingde, the centre’s deputy director, is said to have ordered workers to secretly dissect dead Siberian tigers, an endangered species with only about 500 left in the wild.
The animals’ fur was sold up to 700,000 yuan (£78,827) per piece, according to the anonymous tips. Gruesome photos appear to show Siberian tigers after they were electric shocked to death and skinned.
Their bones were allegedly used to brew the ‘tiger bone wine’, a Chinese traditional tonic that believers say makes you stronger and peps up your sex life, a claim without any scientific evidence.
The alcohol, which has been banned from being produced or sold in China since 1993, was allegedly publicly sold at the animal shelter for up to 5,000 yuan (£562.95) per bottle.
Ren and his manager, Xu Jie, are accused of selling wild animal meat, including Siberian tigers, whooper swans and lions, and serving them as exotic delicacies to some unnamed government officials ‘to make the bosses happy’.
Ren and Xu allegedly also killed live crocodiles before using their blood to cook steamed rice, a dish they believe could strengthen one’s health.
The news immediately attracted national attention after screenshots of the leaked documents widely shared on Chinese social media.
A staff member from the Qinhuangdao Wildlife Rescue reportedly denied the claims, according to state broadcaster Beijing Television.
An official from the local forestry commission told reporters that they had been alerted about the alleged incident while police are investigating the matter.
This article was first published by The Daily Mail on 17 December 2020. Lead Image: A state-affiliated wildlife shelter in China has been accused of secretly dissecting dead Siberian tigers before selling their parts as products to generate profits. The picture allegedly shows a full piece of Siberian tiger fur that was sold by the Qinhuangdao Animal Rescue.
What you can do
Support ‘Fighting for Wildlife’ by donating as little as $1 – It only takes a minute. Thank you.