Pangolin poaching reaches 'epic' levels

2014-06-08 14:41


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Johannesburg - Four African species of pangolins are in severe danger as poaching levels rise drastically, the Sunday Times reported.

"Pangolin poaching in South Africa... has reached epic proportions and we believe it is the most poached mammal on earth," Tshwane University of Technology's ecology professor Ray Jensen told the newspaper.

He said more pangolins were poached than even rhinos.

All eight species of the mammal - also known as scaly anteaters - have been placed on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature's 'red list'.

"In South Africa, pangolins are virtually extinct in Kwazulu-Natal, with North West and Limpopo being two local hot spots where their numbers are drastically declining," said Darren Pietersen, chairperson of the African Pangolin Working Group.

He said the Cape or Temminck's ground pangolin found in SA was considered the least vulnerable but was still on the red list.

Pietersen said the pangolins were poached for meat and also traditional beliefs.
Read more on:    animals  |  poaching

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