July 20, 2009

Frozen Tiger Found In Vietnam

An environmental group said in a statement received Monday that the police in Vietnam, where only about 50 of the animals remain, have seized a frozen young tiger and several kilograms of tiger bones.

The TRAFFIC wildlife trade-monitoring network said that Hanoi's environmental police found the tiger, which weighed 125 pounds, in the boot of a "suspicious" taxi that they had stopped in the capital early last Thursday.

It said that they also had found 25 pounds of limb bones believed to have come from another tiger.

TRAFFIC said that environmental police believe that the tiger had been transported from central Vietnam but it is not yet known whether it was a native cat to the area or whether it was wild or captive.

This is the third tiger seizure in Hanoi this year, after six tiger skins were found at a store in January and 50 pounds of frozen tiger parts were recovered in February, according to TRAFFIC.

"These seizures show us just how serious the threat to Asia's remaining wild tigers is," said Nguyen Dao Ngoc Van, of TRAFFIC's Hanoi office.

Vietnam is part of the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, which has the tiger as part of the protected and endanger species list.

Tigers are threatened from extinction by the loss of natural habitat from Asia's rapid growing population, and the threat of being hunted for fur and body parts used in traditional Chinese medicines.


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