Online Tiger Sale Offer Condemned

Published on Newsbytes, By Julian Matthews

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA, 2000 OCT 25 (NB) — A Thai zoo owner’s proposal to sell tigers over the Internet in an attempt to save the big cats from extinction has been condemned as “ludicrous” by Traffic, an international wildlife trade watchdog.

“We are appalled at the mere suggestion of tigers or tiger parts being traded online,” said Traffic International Communications Manager Sabri Zain. “The suggestion that selling tigers over the Net will save them from extinction is ludicrous. The reverse may indeed be more likely. There is the very real possibility that it may even fuel a renewed demand that will drive tigers over the brink of extinction,” he said via e-mail.

Traffic is the joint wildlife trade monitoring program of conservation organization World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) and IUCN, the World Conservation Union.

Chuvit Pitakpornpallop, a prospective lawmaker who owns a zoo with about 30 tigers in Thailand’s northeast, made the suggestion in the Bangkok Post on Sunday.

Chuvit, who is standing in upcoming elections under the Thai Rak Thai Party banner, said that if Thailand amended its laws to allow commercial production and sale of tigers online, about 20,000 could be raised domestically over the next decade and wipe out black market demand.

Sabri countered that there appears to be no sound scientific basis for those figures. “Tigers are not cattle. The idea that a single country can ‘raise’ a population of tigers in captivity that is almost four times the total number of tigers in the wild today is far-fetched, to say the least. Previous experience with tiger farms has shown that breeding tigers can be fraught with problems,” he said.
Read more

Tags