No 346 Wildlife Trade News 2nd March 2015

Your daily dose of bad new from around

the world about poaching, wildlife and

environmental crime …

in the spotlight today ……………………


China’s wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals (NA comment: They can protect ‘their’ pandas while destroying much of rest of the world’s wildlife. What does this tell us about the Chinese government? Imagine if a foreigner poached some pandas!!)

No 346 Wildlife Trade News 2nd March 2015

A few well-aimed shots can stop poachers making rhinos extinct. (NA comment: MOZAMBIQUE very heavily implicated and criticised – by a UK government official.)

The slaughter is surging, with a South African rhino killed every seven hours for its horn. Time is running out but Owen Paterson explains how Britain can help save the species, not least by withdrawing aid for countries where horn is traded

Make poachers pay a high price for slaughter of wildlife

Finance Minister cuts environment funding by 18 per cent . INDIA. EXTRACT: He also slashed the allocation for Project Tiger to Rs 136.46 cr for 2015-16 from 161.02 cr of the last fiscal, a decrease of 15 per cent.
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WHO’S BUYING BABY ELEPHANTS FROM ZIMBABWE? Readers will be aware China has been accused of complicity in this cruel trade, but the Chinese CITES MA has denied all knowledge of it. Hmmnn. THAILAND, surprisingly, has also been mentioned as a buyer, but this even we find hard to believe. So. We have written to the CITES management Authority in both these countries, copied to the secretariat, inviting them to confirm or deny the allegations. Simple as that – yes or no? We now wait to see how transparent these CITES officials can be. No news in the next few days would leave them and CITES exposed to further worldwide condemnation, won’t it?

All we seek is the truth from CITES – no more, no less.


VIETNAM: We are pleased to report we have heard from the Vietnamese CITES MA concerning the 30 rhino horns offered to an undercover investigator. Their reply was courteous and they are willing to investigate the dealer(s). It has to be said, previous experience in Vietnam suggests dealers like this one are protected by someone in government in return for a bribe and any ‘concern’ is transparent and quickly disappears. However, the investigator is assisting the MA, so let’s see what happens next. The investigator insists the CITES MA in Vietnam are protecting this and other illegal wildlife traders. We are prepared to wait and see what happens next. The only way to judge any CITES MA, or the secretariat and standing committee, is by what they do, not what they say they will do, isn’t it?

Nature Alert has also offered to post any positive news from Vietnam the MA may care to send us. We have kept, whether he likes it or not, John Scanlon of the secretariat informed of these developments. It is now for the Vietnam CITES MA to show us their commitment by arresting the big dealers – at least one is well known so should be easy enough to arrest. If a Westerner can find him, why don’t undercover cops in Vietnam? We will inform you if Vietnam continues to shield the rhino horn dealers. They are known, so swift action by the authorities is to be expected, isn’t it?

Reports blame illegal logging for felling Sarawak forest

EXTRACT: "Japan imports more plywood from tropical forests than any other country, which feeds its huge construction and housing industries,” the NGO wrote. “Half of this comes from the rainforests of the Malaysian state of Sarawak, on the island of Borneo.”
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Richard Leakey on a conservation crusade (just don’t mention God)

Well done Greenpeace.

EXPOSED: Santander loaned millions to the company that did this. (NA comment: Check out the short video.)

1,300ha of forest in Dak Lak destroyed under absentee management. VIETNAM. EXTRACT: VietNamNet Bridge – Deforestation in Ban Don ecological forest cannot be stopped because it is unclear who is in charge of forest management.

Orangutans rescued in Indonesia as more land is cleared for oil palms

Myanmar captures rare white elephant

Alcoholic Russian bears kept in filthy cage after restaurant customers fed them beer are finally freed thanks to Brigitte Bardot
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In Pursuit of Illegal Loggers in India

Appeal to save endangered lemurs is falling on deaf ears, say campaigners extract: The illegal pet trade has also hit populations in the wild – in January a study by Temple University in the US estimated that 28,000 lemurs had been taken from the wild in the past three years.


Cameroonian arrested with 12 ivory tusks

Evidence of Thunder’s Illegal Fishing

Hunting opportunities. PAKISTAN

300 boats of foreign poachers spotted daily in Kalayaan Island Group. PHILIPPINES

Indonesia tightens security measures as illegal fishing activities continue

Mexican Government Shows Commitment to Save Endangered Porpoises

Pangolin scales dealer petitions over rights. UGANDA

Punjab module part of global poaching nexus: WTI

MP minister wants law allowing people to keep tigers as pets INDIA

Illegal loggers in Sarawak to face heavier penalties – Bernama – See more at:

Timber dealers schooled on forestry management practices. GHANA

Assam Governor to forest department: curb rhino poaching

Newly-implemented Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil means more business – (NA COMMENT: This from an industry that has decimated the populations of orangutans, elephants, rhinos, etc in Malaysia and is notorious for being economical with the truth.)

Saving Sabah’s last rhinos. MALAYSIA

SeaWorld plans to launch brand-repairing campaign

Wildfire Destroys Over 35 Hectares of Land in Riau

WRRT Wins UNEP’s Asia Environmental Enforcement Award
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Wildlife Alliance’s Wildlife Rapid Rescue Team Named Winner of the United Nations’ Asia Environmental Enforcement Award 27, 2015 – Phnom Penh and New York City – The United Nations Environment Program recently announced the winners for the 2015 Asia Environmental Enforcement Award, which recognizes countries, organizations and individuals in Asia that demonstrate fearless dedication to combating environmental crime. The award ceremony will take place on May 20, 2015 in Bangkok, Thailand, before the Asia-Pacific Roundtable on Environmental Rule of Law for Sustainable Development.

Wildlife Alliance is proud to announce that the Wildlife Rapid Rescue Team (WRRT) has won this award in honor of their decade-long crusade to stop wildlife trafficking in Cambodia. 2001, the Wildlife Rapid Rescue Team, a wildlife crime investigation and counter-trafficking unit composed of government and non-government officials, have fought to curb the illegal and unsustainable wildlife trade in Southeast Asia. The WRRT conducts operations on roads, in restaurants, in forests and in known and suspected wildlife markets. The team travels around the country intercepting illegal shipments of wildlife, responding to tips from informants and anonymous sources, investigating known wildlife trade offenders for potential new offenses, and rescuing wildlife victimized by wildlife traders, or caught in human-wildlife conflicts. Since its launch, the WRRT has rescued over 60,000 victims from the wildlife trade, resulting in a 75% reduction in wildlife trafficking country-wide, and a 90% decrease in wildlife sales in Phnom Penh restaurants. Their tireless hard work has led to the arrest or fining of over 2,700 offenders. Without the constant surveillance of the WRRT, endangered species throughout Southeast Asia would have disappeared entirely. We applaud the Wildlife Rapid Rescue Team for their accomplishments and commitment to ending the illegal wildlife trade. For more information about the WRRT, visit

The WRRT is a Forestry Administration law enforcement unit led by the Forestry Administration, in cooperation with the Military Police, with technical and financial support from Wildlife Alliance.

About Wildlife Alliance:
Wildlife Alliance was founded by Suwanna Gauntlett to offer direct protection to forests and wildlife through cutting edge conservation programs. The organization provides technical assistance and critical thinking to governments and strives for stakeholder consensus in achieving solutions to multiple environmental threats, including animal trafficking, economic land concessions for agro-industrial plantations and mining, and community encroachment on forestland. Wildlife Alliance is the leader in direct action in the Southeast Asian tropical belt.

Contact: Chloé Lala-Katz

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