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TRAFFIC Bulletin Vol. 28 No. 1 (2016) 19
On Scaling Up Pangolin Conservation
Pangolins have until recently received limited
biological and ecological research effort and
little conservation attention and investment,
despite an increasing extinction risk for all
eight species (e.g., Challender et al., 2014;
Waterman et al., 2014). It is understood populations of
Asian pangolins (Chinese Pangolin Manis pentadactyla,
Sunda Pangolin M. javanica, Indian Pangolin
M. crassicaudata and Philippine Pangolin M. culionensis)
have declined steeply, trends which are predicted to
continue (Challender et al., 2014). This is attributed
primarily to overexploitation for international trade,
largely to supply demand in East Asia, both historical
and contemporary, and legal and illegal, and has involved
skins, meat and scales (Challender et al., 2015). It is also
due to local use across the geographic range of the species
and habitat loss and alteration (Challender et al., 2014).
Although fewer data are available for African
pangolins (Black-bellied Pangolin Phataginus
tetradactyla, White-bellied Pangolin P. tricuspis, Giant
Pangolin Smutsia gigantea and Temminck’s Ground
Pangolin S. temminckii), these species have long been
hunted and poached for bushmeat and use in traditional
African bush medicine, and recent research suggests
exploitation for local consumption is increasing in
Africa (Ingram et al., 2016). Furthermore, a growing
intercontinental and illegal trade involving African
pangolins and their derivatives, primarily their scales,
to supply demand in East and South-east Asia is a
developing and worrying trend (Challender and Hywood,
2012; Gomez et al., 2016). Other threats include habitat
loss and degradation (Waterman et al., 2014) and for
Temminck’s Ground Pangolin specically, electrocution
from electric fences (see Pietersen et al., 2014).
trade dynamIcs
The current pressure on global pangolin populations
seems to have been stimulated by the commercial
depletion of populations of pangolins in China (SATCM,
1996; Zhang, 2008), which saw annual harvests of
around 160 000 specimens during the 1960s to 1980s
(see Zhang, 2008), and a simultaneous trade in tens of
thousands of specimens from South-east Asia to Taiwan
(see Challender et al., 2015). As a consequence, by
the 1990s increasing numbers of pangolins were being
imported to China from Lao PDR, Myanmar and Viet
Nam (Newton et al., 2008), as well as South Asia (Anon.,
1999), a trade that continues today (Challender et al.,
2015) and which now includes specimens from Pakistan,
the most western reach of the species’ range in Asia
(Mahmood et al., 2012). The decline of Asian pangolin
populations, and crucially, the increasing economic and
development ties between East Asia and many African
countries in recent years (e.g., see Wang and Bio-Tchané,
2008), has resulted in a growing illegal trade in African
pangolin parts to Asian markets (e.g., Gomez et al.,
2016). Since 2009, there have been seizures involving
pangolin derivatives implicating Angola, Cameroon,
Central African Republic, Republic of Congo, Côte
d’Ivoire, Guinea, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Sierra
Leone, Uganda, Zimbabwe and Zambia in the trade.
This trade has taken place despite protection afforded
to pangolins through national legislation—though to
varying degrees—and through CITES (see Challender
et al., 2015; Waterman et al., 2014). Based on seizure
data and a comparatively conservative extrapolation
parameter, it is estimated that upwards of one million
pangolins have been traded illegally since the year
2000 (IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group, 2016).
Unfortunately, conservation organizations have been
slow to realise this crisis, and even slower to act.
catalysIng conservatIon actIon
In response to the apparent precarious status of pangolins
in the wild and increasing extinction risk, there has been
a growing, global pangolin conservation movement
in recent years. Here the authors report on some of the
activities that have taken place to address the conservation
concerns for pangolins, including efforts undertaken
since the re-establishment of the IUCN Species Survival
Commission (SSC) Pangolin Specialist Group in 2012.
The Group recognizes those individuals and organizations
who, over the years, have dedicated their invaluable
efforts into researching, protecting and safeguarding
pangolins, and helping to bring the species to the public’s
awareness. And how, through the collective capacity of
its members, the IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group is
contributing to conservation actions for pangolins at the
local, national and global scale and enhancing the ability
and capacity to respond to the challenges pangolins face.
The hitherto largely overlooked threat of trade
to pangolins in Asia was addressed at a workshop
convened by TRAFFIC in 2008, which served to focus
international attention on the issue for the rst time
(see Pantel and Chin, 2009). At the meeting, a range of
scientists, government and NGO stakeholders set out to
examine the extent of illegal trade in pangolins native to
the South and South-east Asia region and to devise key
conservation actions to address them.
Similarly, in 2011, the African Pangolin Working
Group (APWG) was formed to further the conservation
and protection of all four African pangolin species by
generating knowledge, developing partnerships and
creating public awareness and education initiatives.
Since that time, the group has undertaken research
on the behaviour and ecology of African pangolins,
has investigated the molecular structure of pangolin
populations in different African countries, and
investigated local use and trade, as well as hosted the
rst international APWG Pangolin Conference in South
Africa in October 2015.
Also, in 2014, the Singapore Pangolin Working
Group (SPWG) was formed with the aim of better co-
ordinating local conservation, research and outreach
20 TRAFFIC Bulletin Vol. 28 No. 1 (2016)
efforts for pangolins. The SPWG brings together varied
stakeholders in pangolin conservation biannually from
both government and non-governmental organizations.
Already noticeable impacts are increased public
awareness of pangolin conservation. For example, Arts
Fission’s Young People Environmental Dance-Theatre
Production was inspired to raise awareness about the
threat of extinction of pangolins in their annual production
in The National Library, Singapore, 2015, and a range of
other projects have also been initiated.
At the global level, the IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist
Group was re-established in recognition of the deteriorating
conservation status of pangolins, and the tangible
conservation benets that could be reaped by engaging
researchers, social scientists, biologists, veterinarians
and conservation practitioners within a network of expert
volunteers under the auspices of an IUCN SSC Specialist
Group (see Challender et al., 2012). Since then, there have
been a number of advances in consolidating knowledge
and understanding of pangolins and the threats they face,
and in catalysing conservation action.
First, representatives of the IUCN SSC Pangolin
Specialist Group attend CITES meetings to inform the
Parties and raise awareness of pangolin trade issues.
Since 2013, the Specialist Group has attended each
meeting of the CITES Animals Committee, Standing
Committee and the Conference of the Parties (CoP), with
the aim of informing CITES Parties and Committees
in their decision-making. This has taken place through
the holding of side-events (at CoP13 (2010) and SC66
(2016)), the making of interventions in plenary sessions,
and participation in the CITES inter-sessional working
group on pangolins. It has also entailed the submission of
information documents to such meetings on the status of,
and illegal trade in the species. Similarly, nine members
of the Specialist Group attended the First Pangolin Range
States meeting, hosted and organized by the Vietnamese
and US governments in June 2015, and several members
delivered technical presentations and took part in
working groups. At the request of range States at this
meeting, and coinciding with priorities in the Pangolin
Specialist Group Conservation Action Plan (see below),
the group is undertaking work to assist range States
further in their decision-making and management—
namely by producing a series of mapping tools
illustrating species’ distributions, the protection status
of native and non-native pangolin species, and legal and
illegal trade dynamics. Similarly, the group is working to
assist range States in monitoring pangolin populations,
through a body of work to develop standardized survey
and monitoring methodologies.
Second, members of the Specialist Group continue
to contribute to the evidence and knowledge base on
pangolins through publications on the species and the
threats they face. This includes scientic papers on trade
(including its extent and dynamics), the nature of demand
for pangolin products, habitat preferences, diet and
ecology, ethno-medicinal use and offtake levels, ecto-
parasite loads of wild pangolins and genetic research.
The IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group, through
the collaborative efforts of its members, has also played
a signicant role in setting the conservation agenda for
pangolins over the next decade. In 2013, it organized the
First Pangolin Specialist Group Conservation Conference,
which was held at Wildlife Reserves Singapore and brought
together more than 45 members and non-members from
over 15 countries in order to exchange information, share
research and insights and complete revised assessments
for the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, which were
subsequently published in 2014 (e.g., Waterman et al.,
2014). These assessments concluded that all pangolins
are now threatened with extinction: the Chinese and
Sunda pangolins are classied as Critically Endangered,
the Indian and Philippine species as Endangered, and
the four African species as Vulnerable. Beyond this, the
group launched the rst-ever global conservation action
plan for pangolins in 2014, titled “Scaling Up Pangolin
Conservation”, which outlines the range of multifaceted
and critical actions that need to be implemented to secure
the conservation of pangolins.
The Specialist Group is also dedicated to helping lead
conservation efforts in the eld. For example, members
of the group are world leaders in the rescue, rehabilitation
and release of pangolins back into the wild in Africa and
Asia, for example in Zimbabwe, Viet Nam and Cambodia.
Other members are undertaking vital research into
pangolin ecology, distribution and threats in Africa (Benin,
Ghana, Namibia, Nigeria and South Africa) and Asia
(Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, mainland
China, Hainan Island, Hong Kong, Taiwan, India, and
Indonesia). Specialist Group members are also mentoring
and training young African and Asian conservation
practitioners to promote pangolin conservation in Central
Africa; implementing community-based conservation
projects in Nepal; supporting anti-poaching patrols at key
sites in Thailand and Cameroon; working with informant
networks to gain a deeper understanding of illegal trade in
pangolins; and working to reduce demand for pangolins
in Viet Nam and China.
The group has also made substantial efforts to raise the
prole of pangolins globally, through the print, broadcast
and social media, and at special events. In 2014, members
of the Pangolin Specialist Group, with the very generous
support of PPNAT (Photographers for the Preservation of
Nature) highlighted the plight of pangolin species at the
International Festival of Nature and Wildlife Photography
at Montier-en-Der, France. The emphasis of the festival
was on threatened species, in particular on pangolins.
Attended by more than 42 000 people, the festival is the
largest of its kind in Europe.
Pangolins are in crisis but a global movement to address
this has begun. The membership of the IUCN SSC
Pangolin Specialist Group has played an integral role in
setting the global conservation agenda for pangolins over
the next decade, which recognizes the need for multi-
TRAFFIC Bulletin Vol. 28 No. 1 (2016) 21
faceted interventions that reect the complex reality of
the threats facing pangolins. In bringing together the
expertise, knowledge and enthusiasm of its individual
members, the Specialist Group is able to contribute
more effectively to the conservation of pangolins at a
global level. Other stakeholders in range States as well
as national and international NGOs are also playing
critically important roles in these efforts. This increased
attention and investment in pangolin conservation is
a start but, crucially, it must be sustained if there is to
be any notable reduction in the illegal trade and the
conservation of the world’s pangolins is to be secured.
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included in CITES Appendix II: Detailed Reviews of 37
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Challender, D.W.S., Baillie, J.E.M., Waterman, C. and the
IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group (2012). Catalysing
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Challender, D.W.S. and Hywood, L. (2012). African pangolins
under increased pressure from poaching and international
trade. TRAFFIC Bulletin 24:53–55.
Challender, D., Nguyen Van, T., Shepherd, C., Krishnasamy, K.,
Wang, A., Lee, B., Panjang, E., Fletcher, L., Heng, S., Seah
Han Ming, J., Olsson, A., Nguyen The Truong, A., Nguyen
Van, Q. and Chung, Y. (2014). Manis javanica. The IUCN
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species in CITES. Biological Conservation 187:249–
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status, illegal trade and use of pangolins (Manis spp.).
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Specialist Group. Pp.1–8.
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of African pangolins to Asia: a brief case study of pangolin
shipments from Nigeria. TRAFFIC Bulletin 28(1)3–5.
Ingram, D.J., Coad, L. and Scharlemann, J.P.W. (2016). Hunting
and sale of African Pangolins across Sub-Saharan Africa:
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M.S. (2012). Illegal mass killing of Indian pangolin (Manis
crassicaudata) in Potohar Region, Pakistan. Pakistan
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Research 6, 41–53.
Pantel, S. and Chin, S. Y. (eds.) (2009). Proceedings of the
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South and Southeast Asia: 30 June–2 July 2008, Singapore
Zoo, Singapore. TRAFFIC Southeast Asia, Petaling Jaya,
Selangor, Malaysia. 237 pp.
Pietersen, D.W., McKechnie, A.E. and Jansen, R. (2014). Home
range, habitat selection and activity patterns of an arid-
zone population of Temminck’s ground pangolins, Smutsia
temminckii. African Zoology 49(2):365–276.
SATCM (State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine)
(1996). Guangxi Province: Cross-border trade prices for
pangolins rise further. Zhongyaocai (State Administration
of Traditional Chinese Medicine) 19–(4).
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maximising the Benets of China’s increasing economic
engagement in Africa.
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Rankin, P. (2014). Phataginus tetradactyla. The IUCN Red
List of Threatened Species 2014.
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in China. Workshop on the trade and conservation of
pangolins native to South and Southeast Asia. Singapore
Zoo, Singapore, TRAFFIC. Pp.66–74.
Daniel W.S. Challender (corresponding author),
IUCN Global Species Programme, Cambridge, UK; Co-Chair,
IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group; Durrell Institute of
Conservation and Ecology (DICE), University of Kent, UK
Jonathan E.M. Baillie, Conservation Programmes Director,
Zoological Society of London; Co-Chair, IUCN SSC Pangolin
Specialist Group
Carly Waterman, Pangolin Technical Specialist,
Zoological Society of London; Programme Ofcer and
Red List Co-ordinator, IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group
Darren Pietersen, Africa Vice-Chair, IUCN SSC Pangolin
Specialist Group; Co-Chairman, African Pangolin Working Group
Helen Nash, National University of Singapore;
Genetics Vice-Chair, IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group;
Leanne Wicker, Veterinary Health Vice-Chair,
IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group
Keri Parker, Communications Vice-Chair,
IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group
Paul Thomson, Communications Vice-Chair,
IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group
Thai Van Nguyen, Executive Director, Save Vietnam’s Wildlife;
Captive Ecology Vice-Chair, IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group
Lisa Hywood, Tikki Hywood Trust;
Wildlife Crime Vice-Chair, IUCN SSC Pangolin SpecialistGroup;
Board Member, African Pangolin Working Group
Chris R. Shepherd, Regional Director—Southeast Asia, TRAFFIC;
Asia Vice-Chair, IUCN SSC Pangolin Specialist Group
... All eight are listed under Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), which places a blanket ban on international commercial trade in wild-caught specimens. Yet, pangolins are one of the most widely trafficked mammals globally (Challender et al., 2014;Challender et al., 2020). Studies estimate that more than a million pangolins originating from Asia and Africa, have been trafficked globally between 2000 and 2013 (Challender et al., 2014). ...
... Yet, pangolins are one of the most widely trafficked mammals globally (Challender et al., 2014;Challender et al., 2020). Studies estimate that more than a million pangolins originating from Asia and Africa, have been trafficked globally between 2000 and 2013 (Challender et al., 2014). Pangolins are widely hunted and traded across Asia for their meat, skin and scales (Challender et al., 2015;Nijman et al., 2016). ...
Recent studies have linked COVID-19 induced restrictions to an increase in wildlife crime, with severe yet unknown implications for severely threatened taxa like pangolins. We analyze publicly available online seizure reports involving pangolins across India before (2018–2019) and during the pandemic (March–August 2020), using a longitudinal study design to estimate how lockdowns have impacted pangolin trade. Our analysis indicates a significant increase in seizures reported during the lockdown months of March to August 2020, in comparison to the same period in 2018 and 2019. We discuss the drivers behind this spike in pangolin trade and offer potential conservation measures.
... Pangolins are the only known mammals with large protective keratin scales covering their skin [1,2]. Over the past decade, about one million pangolins are believed to have been illegally trafficked, making it the most trafficked animal in the world [3]. They are listed as endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature [4] Red List of threatened species. ...
... Recent reported prices for pangolin products are similar to figures provided elsewhere (Gomez and Sy, 2018), with large increases seen over the past three decades, likely driven by increasing international demand for pangolin parts and products (Challender et al., 2014). Our results also highlight the inequitable nature of the trade. ...
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The illegal wildlife trade represents an urgent conservation challenge, but measuring, understanding, and designing interventions to address it is a complex task. As some of the world's most illegally trafficked wild mammals, pangolins are regularly observed in the illegal wildlife trade, but little is known of the intricacies of the trade at local levels, particularly for lesser-known species such as the Philippine pangolin (Manis culionensis). This research represents the first range-wide study to concurrently document local use and trade of the Philippine pangolin across Palawan Province, Philippines, and provides new information on trade actors, dynamics, and the conditions that help to facilitate this industry. The study was carried out across 18 Palawan municipalities, covering all mainland municipalities, Araceli Island, and the Calamianes Island group. A mixed methods approach was used, combining 1,277 bean count surveys to investigate consumption and hunting levels, alongside 59 in-depth key informant interviews to better understand trade logistics and dynamics. Our results suggest that local use of the species is geographically widespread, but trade hubs were most frequently reported from northern municipalities. Several enabling conditions help facilitate trade across the province, and our data suggest the species may be contributing to the international pangolin trade at levels considerably higher than seizure records indicate.
... Illegal wildlife trade diminishes wildlife populations across different taxa (Margulies et al., 2019;Scheffers et al., 2019), threatens the livelihoods of local communities that depend on wild resources , endangers public health via the emergence of zoonoses such as COVID-19 (Haider et al., 2020), and undermines the rule of law through organised criminal networks and institutional corruption (Milliken and Shaw, 2012;Wasser et al., 2015;Viollaz et al., 2018;Wyatt et al., 2018). Pangolins (Pholidota: Manidae) are labelled the world's most trafficked wild mammals (Challender et al., 2014), with one estimate suggesting that one million individuals were traded globally in 13 years (Heinrich et al., 2017). Pangolins are only found in Africa and Asia, with the eight species split equally between the two continents. ...
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The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) prohibits commercial trans-national trade in pangolin specimens. However, African pangolins are continually trafficked to Asia for traditional medicine, with Nigeria considered a key hub. Using reported Nigeria-linked pangolin seizure data and interviews with Nigerian law enforcement officials, we a) characterised Nigeria's involvement in global pangolin trafficking January 2010–September 2021, particularly observing trafficking trends after pangolin's CITES Appendix I listing; b) estimated the minimum number of pangolins whose scales are in Nigeria-linked seizures January 2010–September 2021, and; c) assessed ongoing efforts within Nigeria to curb pangolin trafficking. Nigeria-linked seizures involved 190,407 kg of pangolin derivatives (99.9% scales) from a minimum of 799,343 pangolins (95% confidence interval; 625,944-996,353) of four species (see caveats in Methods). All shipments confiscated in transit were destined for Asia, with a rapid increase in the mass of maritime shipments over time. Furthermore, stockpiling of pangolin derivatives for overseas shipment is perhaps a prominent trafficking model in Nigeria. Nigeria's law enforcement efforts improved from 2017, the same year Nigeria apparently began playing a hub role. The impact of pangolin's CITES Appendix I listing on pangolin trafficking was unclear, as the marked rise in seizures from 2017 when the listing became effective, coincided with improvements in Nigerian law enforcement efforts. COVID-19–induced travel restrictions likely reduced trafficking activities in 2020 but activities may have fully resumed in 2021. This study provides new information to inform effective enforcement and policy formulation efforts to protect African pangolins.
... As populations started dwindling in the Southeast Asian region, there was a notable shift in the trafficking of pangolins from South Asia (e.g. India, Nepal) and Africa (Challender et al., 2016;Gomez et al., 2016;Heinrich et al., 2016) to meet demand. ...
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Throughout the range of bears in Asia, a combination of threats - loss of suitable habitat, increasing human conflict, illegal wildlife trade - are pushing bear populations towards extinction. But studies in Asia are showing that indiscriminate poaching and illegal trade are increasingly becoming the main driver of species extinctions. Here we examine seizure data and poaching incidents involving India’s bear species from 2009 to 2019 to assess the extent illegal wildlife trade is impacting bear populations in the country. The Wildlife Protection Society of India (WPSI) systematically collects data on poaching and seizures of protected species which is collated, categorised and stored in WPSI’s database on wildlife crime. Using this data, we assessed bear species impacted by trade, mapped out important trade and poaching hubs, and trade dynamics involving bears in India. Seizure data indicated the exploitation of Asiatic black bears for traditional medicine use while sloth bears were coveted for their skins. Poaching incidents predominantly involved sloth bears and steadily increased over the study period. However, it is unclear whether this is a result of targeted hunting of bears for trade, a threat possibly exacerbated by declining bear species elsewhere in Asia where demand still persists for bear gall bladder and parts; or in response to growing levels of human-bear conflict which is on the rise in India due to loss of suitable habitat and increasing human encroachment into forested areas. This study shows that despite being a strictly protected species in India, there is still a threat to bears from illegal trade. Greater effort is needed to protect bear habitat and reduce retaliatory killing of bears which impedes conservation efforts to reduce the illegal exploitation of bears for trade. Enforcement capacity and resources also need to be improved and must encompass intelligence-led investigations and cross-border cooperation between enforcement agencies to target buyers and traders. The trade in bears and their parts should be consistently monitored on a national scale to support effective law enforcement interventions and conservation initiatives to reduce the levels of poaching of bears in India.
Two pangolin species, the Chinese pangolin and the Sunda pangolin, occur in mainland China (MC). TheChinese pangolin was once widely distributed throughout provinces south of the Yangtze River, as well as north of the Yangtze River in southern Sichuan, northeast Chongqing, northwest Hubei, and southwest Henan Provinces. However, the range of the Sunda pangolin is limited to border areas of Yunnan Province. Due to overexploitation and habitat loss, the pangolin population has declined dramatically and it is now widely considered extinct in most areas. At present, although the distribution and population size of the pangolin in MC are unclear, residual populations have been confirmed in Yunnan, Hainan, Guangxi, Guangdong, Hunan, Chongqing, Fujian, Jiangxi, Zhejiang and Anhui provinces. Illegal hunting, habitat loss and fragmentation, small populations, low population densities, and reduced food supply are among the major threats facing pangolins today. The Chinese government has focused strongly on pangolin protection. They have been listed as Category I state-protected animals, and corresponding laws, policies and measures have been introduced to protect them from many threats. Important measures for pangolin conservation in MC include the reduction of public consumption demand, community economic development, public education about conservation and illegal activities, creation or expansion of nature reserves, optimization of road and water conservation facility construction, changes in afforestation methods, a moratorium on commercial breeding programs, proper treatment of confiscated pangolins and derivative products, further species conservation research, and international cooperative conservation efforts. If these conservation actions are implemented, the pangolin population in MC will have a bright future.
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There are two species of pangolins –Chinese (Manis pentadactyla) and Indian (M. crassicaudata) – in Nepal. Despite being one of the most illegally traded group of mammals in the world, there is scant information on pangolin trade in Nepal. We synthesized nation-wide information on pangolin seizures for 2015–2020 period to elucidate extent and network of illegal pangolin trade in Nepal. We recorded a total of 56 pangolin seizures in Nepal in 2015–2020 period. Pangolin scales were confiscated in all 56 seizures totaling to 154.12 kg along with confiscation of live and dead pangolins, and whole pangolin hide in some seizures. That amount of scales would have fetched up to $19,922 in local market and the price could reach up to $116,993 in an international black market. At least 209 pangolins could have been killed and illegally traded in Nepal between 2015 and 2020. Pangolin trade is widespread throughout Nepal with seizures recorded from almost a quarter of all 77 districts almost third of 61 districts where pangolins are found. Most seizures occurred in country’s capital Kathmandu (n = 29). Additionally, we identified districts adjoining Kathmandu, and districts bordering Nepal-China and Nepal-India as major routes and points in pangolin trade network. A total of 95 people were involved in pangolin poaching that included local residents from 26 districts in Nepal. The pool of convicts was dominated by males and Nepali nationals between 20 and 30 years old. Most major ethnic groups in Nepal were involved in pangolin trade with the highest involvement of people from the Tamang ethnicity (36%). Presence of pangolins is reported from all 18 districts from where seizures were recorded and 26 districts from where convicts originated suggesting active involvement of locals in pangolin poaching and trafficking. We have generated baseline information on illegal pangolin trade in Nepal for 2015–2020. We expect that this information will be helpful to law enforcement agencies to curb existing pangolin trade in Nepal.
Global climate change caused by fossil energy consumption is strongly threatening the species diversity of mammals. In particular, changes in temperature and precipitation have affected the habitat of pangolins. Thus, we employed the MaxEnt modeling approach to simulate the potential habitat distribution of pangolins under the current climate and future climate change scenarios during 2081–2100. The habitats of the two Phataginus pangolins were mainly affected by temperature and precipitation. Conversely, geomorphological factors mainly affected the habitat of pangolins in the genus Smutsia. Under the SSP5–8.5 scenario, the habitat of Smutsia gigantea increased by 460.8 Mha, while that of Smutsia temminckii decreased by 89.4 Mha. Temperature and altitude affected the habitat of Manis crassicaudata, while vegetation coverage affected the habitat of Manis javanica. Moreover, human activities threatened the habitat of pangolins in Africa and India. However, labor transfer in southern China weakened the negative effects of human activities on the survival of pangolins in rural regions. Due to the lack of uniform intergovernmental schemes regarding global pangolin protection, the illegal pangolin trade threatens pangolin species worldwide, especially in Africa. From current to future scenarios, climate change increased the habitats of Manis crassicaudata, Manis javanica, Smutsia gigantea and Phataginus tetradactyla, while the habitats of Manis pentadactyla and Smutsia temminckii were threatened. Moreover, the total habitat area of the pantropical distribution zone in the Southern Hemisphere (26°S–33°S) decreased, mainly due to the extensive reduction in Smutsia temminckii habitat. The habitat of the pantropical zone in the Northern Hemisphere (19°N–28°N) basically remained unchanged. Increases in the habitat of the tropical distribution zone (11°S–17°N) were dominated by habitat gains for Smutsia gigantea. These findings provide scientific evidence to support global pangolin protection.
The unique capabilities of dogs to further conservation efforts, harnessed in partnership with proficient handlers, continues to gain recognition but also remains under-utilized in many relevant sectors. This chapter shares firsthand knowledge acquired by conservation detection dog handlers in pursuit of related initiatives worldwide. Ecological monitoring applications at the interface of environmental forensics and enforcement are discussed around ways that dog-handler teams could be further incorporated therein. The notion of proactive monitoring, to facilitate sustainable preservation of organisms and ecosystems, and to lessen the strain on enforcement resources, is a prevailing theme. Recognizing the restricted resources generally available to address our most pressing conservation issues, limitations of dog-handler teams are outlined alongside strengths. Common misconceptions around who (dogs and handlers) can do this work, and the possibility of undermining dog team effectiveness through erroneous perceptions of their use as a monitoring tool, are also detailed. Considerations regarding the feasibility of implementing new international detection dog programs relative to those already in place and to additional resources and capacity, are also offered.
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Indonesia is home to five species of porcupines, three of which are island endemics. While all five species are currently assessed as Least Concern by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, impacts of harvest and trade have not been factored in. To gain a fuller understanding of the porcupine trade in Indonesia, this study examines seizure data of porcupines, their parts and derivatives from January 2013 to June 2020. A total of 39 incidents were obtained amounting to an estimated 452 porcupines. Various confiscated commodities revealed porcupines are traded for consumption, traditional medicine, trophies/charms as well as for privately run wildlife/recreational parks. Targeted hunting of porcupines for commercial international trade was also evident. Porcupines are also persecuted as agricultural pests and wildlife traffickers take advantage of such situations to procure animals for trade. What clearly emerges from this study is that porcupines are being illegally hunted and exploited throughout their range in Indonesia facilitated by poor enforcement and legislative weakness. Porcupines are in decline due to habitat loss, retaliatory killings and uncontrolled poaching. It is therefore crucial that effective conservation measures are taken sooner rather than later to prevent further depletion of these species. Including all porcupines as protected species under Indonesian wildlife laws and listing them in Appendix II of CITES to improve regulation, enforcement and monitoring of domestic and international trade trends involving porcupines in Indonesia would contribute significantly towards this end.
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Pangolins are among the most valuable and widely traded taxa in the Southeast Asian illegal wildlife trade, yet little is known of their ecology and they are rarely reported in biodiversity surveys. Firstly, this study collated field and museum reports to produce the first distribution maps for the pangolins Manis pentadactyla and M. javanica in Vietnam. We also demonstrated that current biodiversity monitoring methods are rarely successful in recording pangolin presence and that most of the information about their distribution derives from the knowledge of local hunters. Secondly, semi-structured interviews with hunters revealed that the methods used to catch pangolins differed depending on species and site and suggest that the more terrestrial populations of M . pentadactyla are at greater risk from hunting than the more arboreal M. javanica. We highlight the value of applying local hunters’ knowledge to developing ecological study methods and conservation programmes for pangolin species in Southeast Asia.
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Pangolins, or scaly anteaters (Manidae, Pholidota), are atypical mammals covered in individual, overlapping scales comprised of keratin. There are eight extant species which inhabit tropical and subtropical forests, dry woodlands and open savannahs of the Old World. Four are native to Asia: the Chinese Pangolin Manis penta-dactyla, Sunda Pangolin M. javanica, Thick-tailed Pan-golin M. crassicaudata and Philippine Pangolin M. cu-lionensis, while four species inhabit sub-Saharan Af-rica: Temminck's Ground Pangolin Smutsia temminckii, the African White-bellied Pangolin Phataginus tricus-pis, the Black-bellied Pangolin Uromanis tetradactyla and the Giant Ground Pangolin S. gigantea. It is understood pangolins evolved from the Carnivora around 70 million years ago, dispersing from Europe into Africa and subsequently South and Southeast Asia. Further, they are myrmecophagous and provide an important ecosystem service through the regulation of ant and termite populations. Pangolins worldwide are threatened by exploitation for consumptive use, by habitat loss and fragmentation and by land management practices.
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Pangolins are among the most valuable and widely traded taxa in the Southeast Asian illegal wildlife trade, yet little is known of their ecology and they are rarely reported in biodiversity surveys. Firstly, this study collated field and museum reports to produce the first distribution maps for the pangolins Manis pentadactyla and M. javanica in Vietnam. We also demonstrated that current biodiversity monitoring methods are rarely successful in recording pangolin presence and that most of the information about their distribution derives from the knowledge of local hunters. Secondly, semi-structured interviews with hunters revealed that the methods used to catch pangolins differed depending on species and site and suggest that the more terrestrial populations of M . pentadactyla are at greater risk from hunting than the more arboreal M. javanica. We highlight the value of applying local hunters’ knowledge to developing ecological study methods and conservation programmes for pangolin species in Southeast Asia.
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Massive and ruthless killing of Indian pangolin (Manis crassicaudata) was recorded in Potohar region of Pakistan. From January 2011 to May 2012; 118 individuals were killed brutally including from districts ___________________________ * Corresponding author: Chakwal (n=60), Attock (n=25), Jhelum (n=19) and Rawalpindi (n=14). Nomads and local hunters have been found directly involved in the illegal trade of the animal with a selling price of Rs.10,000-15,000/-per animal (US$ 108 to 163) depending upon its size. The captured live pangolin is boiled in water tank to remove its scales, the rest of the scale-less dead body being thrown away. It is suspected that its scales have a high demand in the illegal local as well international markets; to be used in manufacturing bullet-proof jackets and in traditional Chinese medicines.
All previous behavioural studies of Temminck's ground pangolins (Smutsia temminckii) have focused on populations in mesic regions. We examined home range size, activity periods, habitat selectivity and refuge site selection of 13 individuals over three years in the Kalahari Desert of South Africa, near the western edge of the species' range. Kernel home ranges of adults averaged 6.5 ± 5.9 km2, while juveniles had average home ranges of 6.1 ± 4.0 km2. Reliable prediction of 95% of the Kernel home range required 88 ± 67.7 tracking days. No significant habitat selectivity was observed. Earthen burrows were the most frequently used refuge type. The time at which activity commenced varied seasonally as well as among individuals, with an increase in diurnal activity during winter. Young pangolins also displayed more diurnal activity compared to adults. Individuals spent 5.7 ± 2.0 hours per 24-hour cycle outside of refuges, with no significant seasonal variation. Juvenile dispersal peaked during mid-summer, with individuals travelling up to 49 km from their natal areas. We estimate a breeding density of 0.16 individuals/km2 and a total density of 0.31 individuals/km2 for our study area. Our data suggest that activity patterns, movements and refuge selection is similar across the species’ southern African range, but that densities may be higher in the Kalahari compared to populations in more mesic eastern areas.