According to recent reports from the World Wildlife Fund, pangolins in Pakistan are sharply declining due to increased illegal poaching to meet the growing demand for their scales and meat in China. This demand for pangolin scales as a form of traditional medicine and meat as a delicacy and sign of social status is the primary reason that pangolins are the most illegally trafficked wild mammal in the world.
In addition to pangolins, other species in Pakistan are also falling victim to illegal wildlife trade. While shipments of illegal wildlife products are confiscated by authorities that take this crime very seriously, more measures must be taken to ensure that the animals are not killed in the first place. Despite China’s recent upgrade of protection status for pangolins, the demand has not stopped. Illegal wildlife trade doesn’t just decimate endangered animal populations, it can also spark global health crises, such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
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