Monthly Archives: June 2012

7 Endangered Monkeys Stolen at Polish Zoo

AP/Sacramento Bee

WARSAW, Poland — A zoo official in southwestern Poland says seven endangered monkeys have been stolen from their cage for possible sale on the black market.

The Emperor tamarin monkeys, a family of two adults and five of their offspring, were reported missing early Sunday from the Opole Zoo when employees found someone had broken into their enclosure.

The head of the breeding section at the zoo, Krzysztof Kazanowski, said Monday the monkeys ranged in age from under a year to 10 years old. Kazanowski said they were probably stolen for someone who wants to own rare and endangered species that are illegal to buy. The tamarin monkey is native to South American rainforests.

The police are investigating the theft.

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Rare Endangered Wild Elephants Poisoned


BANDA ACEH, Indonesia: Three critically-endangered Sumatran elephants were found dead in an oil palm plantation in western Indonesia and are believed to have been poisoned, local environmental group Fakta said yesterday.

Villagers found them in a government-owned oil palm plantation in the eastern part of Aceh province. They were estimated to be four and five-year-olds, chief Rabono Wiranata said.

“We suspect that they died after consuming bars of soap laced with poison we found near the carcass. It seems they have died around one week.”

Elephants are usually killed by villagers, who regard them as pests that destroy their plantations, or by poachers for their tusks.

There are fewer than 3,000 Sumatran elephants in the wild, according to International Union for Conservation of Nature, marking a 50 per cent drop in numbers since 1985.

Game rangers, meanwhile, killed a poacher and seized 28 tusks during a weekend raid in the northeastern town of Binga in Zimbabwe, a wildlife official said. An assault rifle, 67 rounds of ammunition, a mobile and two Zambian sim cards were also recovered.

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Company threatens extinction of native eels


New Zealand First says the harvesting of longfin eels to the point of extinction for the benefit of an overseas-owned pet food company clearly illustrates the damage possible when foreign-owned companies are given open access to our resources. 

Rt Hon Winston Peters says it is appalling the Singaporean-owned Addiction Foods are using endangered native longfin eels to create what it calls ‘gourmet pet food’. 

“Populations of native longfin eels are declining and are at risk of extinction yet they are being sold in the US as upmarket pet food.

“The Government needs to stop foreign-owned companies from plundering our natural resources or longfin eels will be eaten into extinction by pampered American cats and dogs.

“For New Zealand to forever lose a precious native species in this manner is unacceptable and the Government must stop the damage inflicted upon the country by foreign-controlled companies.

“People in Europe who know anything about food rightfully regard eels as a delicacy, not pet food,” says Winston.

Source: New Zealand First.

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Elephants and rhinos face extinction according to experts


According to a new report which has been put forward by experts, tens of thousands of elephants were killed last year and both elephants and rhinos face the threat of extinction



The African wildlife crisis is clearly on the high as alarm bells have already started ringing in the case of the extinction of elephants and rhinos. According to a new report by the global body tracking endangered species organization, around tens of thousands of elephants were likely slaughtered just last year. The reason for their slaughtering is their tusks. Rhinos are also a target for these killings as their horns are in high demand due to their medicinal benefits.The report was presented on Thursday to the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, calling for action so that this mass slaughter of these animals can be stopped.

The reason why poachers are after these two animals is that prices of their horns have sky-rocketed due to demand in Asia. In Asia, the elephants’ tusks are used as ornaments and are considered exquisite while the rhino horns are used in traditional medicines.

The poachers attack these animals and kills them and later just chop of their tusks and leave the corpse behind. The trade of these animal’s tusks and horns is illegal but their demand is pushing the illegal trade and putting these animals to extinction. John Scanlon, the secretary-general of the C0nvention on International Trade in Endangered Species said that there are just 25,000 rhinos left in this world and their extinction could come ‘during the lifetime of our children’. He further noted that in Africa alone, around 448 rhinos were killed last year, whereas this number had just been 13 in 2007.

In a recent smuggling incident, Kenya said that around 359 elephant tusks had been caught at Sri Lanka and it was identified that the shipment had come from Kenya.

“We have slid into an acute crisis with the African elephant that does not appear to be on many people’s radar in the U.S.,” added Iain Douglas-Hamilton, founder of Save the Elephants, according to a report by “What’s happening to the elephants is outrageous, and the more so since we have been through these ivory crises before and should have found solutions by now.”

All the participants in the conference urged the U.S. to take notice of this problem and take timely action. The U.S. can help by pressing other nations, particularly China and Thailand to crack down on this trade and impose strict punishments and restrictions on it.

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Thai’s Irrawaddy Dolphins At Risk Of Extinction


SONGKHLA, May 25 (Bernama) — A Songkhla-based Irrawaddy Dolphin conservation club and concerned officials on Thursday urged relevant government agencies to determine proper conservation measures for the critically endangered dolphins in the Songkhla Lake.

Uthai Yordchan, president of Ban Laem Hat Irrawaddy Dolphin Conservation Club together with Songkhla Farmers Council members submitted a letter to the Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister and the Natural Resources and Environment Minister via Songklha Governor Grisada Boonrach.

The club called on government agencies to take steps to resolve risk factors related to the extinction of the dolphins in Songkhla Lake and to find ways to conserve the dolphins, Thai news agency reported.

Irrawaddy dolphins are considered a valuable natural resource among residents in the Songkhla Lake Basin, the group explained.

In April and May this year, local fishermen found seven dead dolphins in the Irrawaddy Dolphin conservation zone in Songkhla Lake.

The club said that the remaining dolphins in Songkhla Lake are endangered and at high risk of extinction in the near future.

Santi Ninwat, a fisheries biologist at the Songkhla-based Thailand Marine and Coastal Resources Research Centre, said an estimated 30 Irrawaddy dolphins currently inhabit the Songkhla Lake.


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Hundreds of Endangered Antelope Die in Kazakhstan


A new massive wave of deaths among the extremely endangered saiga antelope has been registered in northern Kazakhstan, the Agriculture Ministry’s press service said on Thursday.

The ministry said earlier that 540 saiga carcasses had been found in the Kostanai region of Kazakhstan.

“Aviation monitoring today … discovered a new concentration of saiga deaths with the approximate number of dead animals reaching beyond 400,” the ministry said.

Last year, at least 12,000 saiga died in western Kazakhstan, presumably from pasteurellosis infection and from overeating. In November 2010, Kazakhstan introduced a ban on saiga hunting.

The latest statistics put the number of saiga in Kazakhstan at 85,500. The country spends $800,000 annually to prevent the animals’ deaths.

Saiga were virtually exterminated in the 1920s but then increased their numbers in the Soviet Asian republics in the 1950s. The animals mostly became endangered because of hunting and the high demand for their horns in Chinese medicine.


Apart from Kazakhstan, saiga live in the Russian Kalmykia region and in Mongolia.

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220 endangered rhinos killed in South Africa since start of 2012


JOHANNESBURG (Xinhua) — At least 220 endangered rhinos have been lost to the poachers for their horns in South Africa since the beginning of this year, a government department said on Tuesday.

Among the slaughtered rhinos, 207 were killed in the famous Kruger National Park in the northeastern province of Limpopo , and the reserves in the central northern province of the North West and the southeastern province of KwaZulu-Natal , said the Department of Environmental Affairs.

In 2011, a total of 448 rhinos were killed in South Africa , compared to 333 in 2010.

Conservationists have warned the rhino in South Africa is facing their worst poaching crisis in decades. 

If the killing trend continues at this rate, it is expected that at least 500 rhinos will be illegally slaughtered by the end of 2012.

“The department, our provinces and public entities view this illegal killing of our national treasure in a very serious light, and will continue to prioritize our fight against this crime with other law enforcement agencies,” said the department spokesperson Albi Modise.

A total of 146 arrests have been made in an effort to curb the illegal poaching of the rhino this year, according to the department.

South Africa is home to the largest endangered rhino population in the world of about 20, 000, occupying nearly 80 percent of the global total population of rhino.

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