Browsing: African illegal wildlife trade

Africa: The internet dampens efforts to decelerate wildlife trafficking.
  • The internet has evolved into a worldwide marketplace for the exotic animal trade
  • Southeast Asia, the final destination for many African wildlife goods, had a 50 per cent decrease in smuggling in 2020
  • Illegal wildlife trafficking is worth about US$7 billion to US$23 billion worldwide each year
  • As per the AWF, up to 2.7 million pangolins are smuggled into Chinese markets each year

The Coronavirus pandemic has redefined the African illegal wildlife trade by shifting transactions online, constraining trafficking networks, and increasing bush meat poaching among the poor.

Earlier this year, the illicit wildlife trade in Africa took an extraordinary turning point. Deep in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s tropical forest, a giant pangolin – an endangered animal species with plate-like scales that could weigh up to 30kg – was abducted by rebels who sought a US$500 ransom.

The Virunga jungle, home to lions, nearly extinct silverback gorillas, and