Animals baby tiger

Published on September 22nd, 2010 | by Zachary Shahan

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Live Baby Tiger in Suitcase Rescued from Wildlife Traffickers

September 22nd, 2010 by

baby tiger found in suitcase

Security officials opened a suspicious suitcase in a Bangkok, Thailand airport recently and found a young tiger, 2 and 1/2 months old, sleeping, drugged a bit, and stuffed in the suitcase near a stuffed animal tiger. The message to the Thai woman who was boldly breaking the law and offending animal lovers everywhere: “Please, don’t smuggle baby anythings! And especially not endangered, threatened tigers. You are in deep trouble!”

They are sending essentially the same message to others who might try to do such things as well.

Poaching and trading done to meet the international demand for tiger parts, live tigers, and tiger products is a big No No. Tiger populations in Thailand and throughout Asia are critically declining and protections are set for good reason.

Thankfully, this cub, which might not have survived the trip, is being nurtured back to health and cared for at the Rescue Center of the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation. They will send DNA of the cub to Khaopratab Wildlife Rescue Center in Ratchaburi Province. This will determine which subspecies the cub belongs to, which will help determine its origin.

Need for Constant Monitoring and Tougher Penalties for Tiger and Other Endangered Species Traffickers

Chris Shepherd, TRAFFIC Southeast Asia’s Deputy Regional Director, cautioned that this case demonstrated a real need for constant monitoring and tougher penalties. This rescue comes on the wake of a training program of the ASEAN Wildlife Enforcement Network. They just recently held a course, sponsored by the US Agency of International Development and given at the Suyarnabhumi International Airport.

Shepherd acknowledges, “If people are trying to smuggle live tigers in their check-in luggage, they obviously think wildlife smuggling is something easy to get away with and do not fear reprimand. Only sustained pressure on wildlife traffickers and serious penalties can change that.” Shepherd gave strong appreciations to the people who stopped this crime. “We applaud all the agencies that came together to uncover this brazen smuggling attempt.”

Shepherd wants strong repercussions for the people illegally involved and also a follow-through investigation. TRAFFIC is glad to see these training programs pay off in seizures, arrests and continued vigilance at the airport, especially by the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation.

The message to wildlife traffickers is: Stop hurting the animals; Stop hurting the planet; Stop hurting yourself, Stop!

Investigations are taking place and the parties involved are working to determine if the cub was caught wild or captive-bred, where exactly it came from, and the suspect’s intended final destination.

For photos of the tiger, visit the World Wildlife Fund’s story.

Related Stories:
1. Frozen Tiger Found in Taxi
2. More Frozen Tiger Carcasses Found in Vietnam

Photo Credit: Tiger Cub — Howletts Wildlife Park, Kent, England, photographed by flickr user law_keven

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About the Author

is the director of CleanTechnica, the most popular cleantech-focused website in the world, and Planetsave, a world-leading green and science news site. He has been covering green news of various sorts since 2008, and he has been especially focused on solar energy, electric vehicles, and wind energy since 2009. Aside from his work on CleanTechnica and Planetsave, he's the founder and director of Solar Love, EV Obsession, and Bikocity. To connect with Zach on some of your favorite social networks, go to ZacharyShahan.com and click on the relevant buttons.



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