Market figures out that geckos don’t cure AIDS, but killing continues

Market figures out that geckos don’t cure AIDS, but killing continues

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Millions of tokay geckos continue to be traded for traditional medicine, despite waning belief that the colorful are a cure for AIDS, reports a new study from TRAFFIC. The study found that a spike in tokay gecko demand due to rumors that it could cure HIV/AIDS was relatively short-lived, lasting from 2009 and early 2011. Nonetheless geckos are still traded in large numbers, with over-collection impacting wild populations across much of the reptile’s range, especially in and Java.

The study notes that has declared imports of at least 15 million geckos since 2004. Major consuming nations also include mainland , Hong Kong, Taiwan and Viet Nam.

Users believe dried geckos can help treat asthma, diabetes and skin disorders.

CITATION: Olivier S. Caillabet (2013).The Trade in Tokay Geckos Gekko gecko in South-East Asia: with a case study on Novel Medicinal Claims in Peninsular MalaysiaTRAFFIC, Petaling Jaya, Selangor, ISBN 978-983-3393-36-7

This article was written for Mongabay.com and reposted on Focusing on Wildlife

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