‘Destroy seized wildlife items’A task team formed to collect information about seized wildlife parts, ‘trophies’ and products stored in various protected areas has recommended destroying these items in order to manage it effectively.
A task team formed to collect information about seized wildlife parts, ‘trophies’ and products stored in various protected areas has recommended destroying these items in order to manage it effectively.
The Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation (DNPWC), under the Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation (MoFSC), had recently formed a team to study about the remains of the endangered wildlife stored for several years and recommend measures for its management.
The team led by Fanindra Raj Kharel, director general at DNPWC, has recommended the ministry to destroy 369 sets of rhino horns along with valuable body parts and products of tigers, leopard species including snow, clouded and spotted leopards, among others, stored in different national parks and wildlife reserves of the country.
In the report, the study team has found 369 horns and 4782 hooves of rhinos, along with skull, skin and products made up of rhino horns stored across the country. Sixteen of the total 369 rhinos horned seized from poachers and traders at different intervals over the years and now stored, are found to be fake ones, the report mentioned.
There are 69 tiger skins, 49 leopard skins, three snow leopard skins, two clouded leopard skins along with 439 kilograms of tiger and leopard bones stored in the country. The seized items stored in different protected areas consisting of teeth, nails, tails and whiskers of big cat species are also recommended for destruction, along with skins fish and various mammals seized in the past.
Other items include musk pods, pangolin scales, tortoise scales along with various products made up of using the endangered and protected wildlife species. “The government decided to study on the status of the seized animal parts and products stored in different places in the past after it became difficult to manage it,” said Ram Chandra Kandel, chief conservation officer of Chitwan National Park.
At present, Kasara, inside the Chitwan National Park, is the main storehouse of these seized wildlife items with few other places across the country. The confiscated wildlife parts and products deposited in various places were destroyed for the first and last time in the country in 1998.
Due to lack of legal framework to decide on what to do with the seized valuable items, the authorities are having hard time work on its effective management, Poudel added.