Unless the wildlife trade can be controlled, Asia will lose much of its unique biodiversity, experts of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) said today in Kuala Lumpur at the 7th Conference of the Parties for the Convention on Biological Diversity (COP-7), convened to address the worlds priority conservation issues.
"Asias wildlife is being sold on a massive scale throughout the region for food, medicines and pets, and populations of many species are declining or facing local extinction," said WCS scientist Dr Melvin Gumal, a participant at COP-7 and Director of WCSs Malaysia Program.
The trade includes everything from small songbirds sold as pets, to reptiles sold on a massive scale for their skins and their meat, to animal parts for medicinal use. Even species once thought of as common are becoming rare as they are being trapped, shot or snared and sent to the marketplace. The result is loss of wildlife across the region.
John Delaney | EurekAlert!
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