Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Thailand must act to prevent resurgence of illegal wild elephant trade

Wild live elephants are being illegally captured to supply the lucrative tourism industry in Thailand and urgent changes to the country’s legislation and elephant registration procedures are needed to stop the trafficking, finds a new report released today.

Thailand must act to prevent resurgence of illegal wild elephant trade
An assessment of the live elephant trade in Thailand provides details of between 79 and 81 wild elephants illegally captured for sale into the tourist industry in Thailand between April 2011 and March 2013.
At least 60% of the animals trafficked originated in Myanmar where the capture of elephants is considered a serious threat to the future survival of that country’s wild population of around 4,000–5,000 Asian Elephants.

In Myanmar, domesticated elephants are used to corral wild animals into pit-traps where older protective members of herds are often killed and the higher value, younger animals taken. The young are then transported to Thai—Myanmar border areas and then mentally broken and prepared for training before being sold into the tourism industry in Thailand where they are put to work at tourist camps or hotels.

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