The Forgotten One Essay

1434 words - 6 pages

The Forgotten One
Pangolins are scaled anteaters which originate from Africa and Southeast Asia, especially from Sumatra, Indonesia (Foley, 2014). They are special creatures which are blessed with perfect self-defense systems to survive in the wild. They do not have any potential threats in their habitats. When they feel threatened, they will roll their bodies into scale-covered balls (Goswami, 2014). Even the mighty lions and tigers will think twice before trying to attack them. However, there are no perfect living beings. They are short of people’s attentions. Compared to the other animals traded in the black markets, they are unfortunately unattractive (Davies, 2014). Most people may not ...view middle of the document...

However, it just covered 10% of the actual numbers. More than 200,000 pangolins had lost their lives during the last two years (Cota, 2014). There is no exact data on the actual numbers of pangolins that still able to survive in the wild. However, due to the constant trafficking, their numbers are claimed to have declined significantly (Foley, 2014). The fact that pangolins only breed once a year aggravates the situations (Huong, 2013). Illegal poachers do not care about their remaining populations. Ten years ago, in Sumatra, it was common to meet these creatures in the street. Nowadays, people will need bunch of luck to be able to bump into them in the wild (Sutter, 2014). Moreover, unlike the other popular endangered animals, international organizations and governments seem to be so slow to raise awareness and funds to save these scaled anteaters. As a result, black marketers are able to continue their operations and smuggle more pangolins to China, Vietnam, and other countries (Mayberry, 2014).
The main reason why pangolins are the most trafficked animals in the world is because of the increasing demand from the market. In the restaurants in Vietnam, one dish of fresh pangolin is worth approximately $1750 (Sutter, 2014). This fact makes pangolins as one of the most profitable and interesting commodities for illegal smugglers. According to Foley (2014), there is a possibility that pangolins’ trafficking is controlled by the underground world –mafia. Besides being used as ‘VIP Class’ food, pangolins have also been long used by Chinese people as traditional medicines (Larson, 2014). Chinese people believe that they can cure cancer and skin disease by eating the pangolins’ scales. However, recent researches have refuted this belief and proved that the scales contain just the same ingredients as human’s nails (Sutter, 2014). Vietnamese people also use pangolins for health and sexual reasons. They believe that by drinking from the rice wine bottle that has pangolins floating in it will make them healthy and strong (Larson, 2014). They also consume pangolins’ fetuses for sexual reasons. Both of these beliefs have neither legitimate proofs nor proper researches (Sutter, 2014). People are just craving for more pangolins for blurred reasons.
On the other hand, pangolins’ trafficking is very important for people who live in inner part of Sumatra (Larson, 2014). They earn their livings by catching pangolins and selling them to trader, who will then distribute the pangolins to other countries. They do not have other reasons to hunt the pangolins. Their only motive is just to be able to buy fresh milk and food for their children (Mayberry, 2014). However, this is what makes pangolins’ trafficking even worse. The traders make use of the hunters’ needs for living. They ask them to hunt the pangolins and reward them with small amount of money. According to Cota (2014), for a pangolin, the hunter will receive $22. After that, the traders will distribute it to...

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