Animal Farms in Southeast Asia Fuel an Illegal Trade in Rare Wildlife

Some proponents, including government officials, believe that such facilities should be legal and encouraged, arguing that they relieve pressure to hunt wild animals by satiating demand with captive-bred animals.

Others say there is no evidence to back this assertion. “I can’t think of any species in Southeast Asia that benefits from commercial captive breeding,” said Chris Shepherd, the Southeast Asia regional director for Traffic, a nonprofit wildlife trade-monitoring group.

Scott Roberton, the director of counter-wildlife trafficking at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Asia program, added that the risks associated with legalizing trade in farmed tigers and other endangered species are the same as those associated for decades with the ivory trade.

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