Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Illegal bushmeat trade rife in Europe, research finds

Date:
June 18, 2010
Source:
Zoological Society of London
Summary:
More than five tonnes of illegal bushmeat is being smuggled in personal luggage each week through one of Europe's busiest airports, reveals new research.

More than five tonnes of illegal bushmeat is being smuggled in personal luggage each week through one of Europe's busiest airports, reveals new research published in Conservation Letters.

Working alongside customs officials at France's Roissy-Charles de Gaulle airport, researchers from the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), The Royal Veterinary College (RVC) and The National Veterinary School and the Natural History Museum of Toulouse identified eleven bushmeat species from confiscated luggage, including species of primate, crocodiles and pangolins.

This study quantifies for the first time the illegal trade of bushmeat through a European airport.

134 passengers were searched from 29 flights over a period of 17 days. The single largest confiscation was of 51kg of bushmeat carried by a single passenger with no other luggage.

"Our results estimate that around 270 tonnes of potentially contaminated illegal bushmeat is passing unchecked through a single European airport per year, posing a huge potential risk to public health," says lead author Dr Anne-Lise Chaber, from ZSL and the RVC.

The Central African Republic, Cameroon and the Democratic Republic of Congo were identified as the main sources of bushmeat. The researchers conducted conversations with three traders in Paris revealing that, as well as street trading, traders take orders in advance and arrange delivery of the goods to the customer.

Co-author Dr Marcus Rowcliffe from ZSL says: "Our results show that this is a lucrative, organised trade feeding into a luxury market; a 4kg monkey will cost around €100 in France, compared with just €5 in Cameroon."

He adds: "Importing bushmeat is relatively easy as customs officials are given no financial incentives to uncover illegal meat imports, compared with the bonuses they're awarded for drug and counterfeit seizures. Also, penalties are very low for people caught carrying illegal meat."

39 per cent of the confiscated bushmeat was identified as being listed under the Convention for the Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), highlighting the unsustainable nature of the trade and its potential impact on species of conservation concern.

In addition to wildlife conservation concerns, the illegal trade of such large quantities of bushmeat raises serious questions about the importation of pathogens into Europe.

"Surveillance methods need to be more robust and deterrents more severe if we're to have any chance of halting this illegal trade," says co-author Dr Andrew Cunningham, from ZSL.

This is the first systematic study of the volume and nature of the international bushmeat trade. The researchers now wish to undertake a wider-scale study with greater geographic coverage to determine the overall volume of the illegal bushmeat trade into Europe.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Zoological Society of London. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Anne-Lise Chaber, Sophie Allebone-Webb, Yves Lignereux, Andrew A. Cunningham, J. Marcus Rowcliffe. The scale of illegal meat importation from Africa to Europe via Paris. Conservation Letters, 2010; DOI: 10.1111/j.1755-263X.2010.00121.x

Cite This Page:

Zoological Society of London. "Illegal bushmeat trade rife in Europe, research finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 June 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100617210641.htm>.
Zoological Society of London. (2010, June 18). Illegal bushmeat trade rife in Europe, research finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100617210641.htm
Zoological Society of London. "Illegal bushmeat trade rife in Europe, research finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100617210641.htm (accessed September 2, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) — You're more likely to gain weight while watching action flicks than you are watching other types of programming, says a new study published in JAMA. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Get A Mortgage, Receive A Cat — Only In Russia

Get A Mortgage, Receive A Cat — Only In Russia

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) — The incentive is in keeping with a Russian superstition that it's good luck for a cat to be the first to cross the threshold of a new home. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) — The U.N. says the problem is two-fold — quarantine zones and travel restrictions are limiting the movement of both people and food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sharks Off the Menu and on the Tourist Trail in Palau

Sharks Off the Menu and on the Tourist Trail in Palau

AFP (Sep. 2, 2014) — Tourists in Palau clamour to dive with sharks thanks to a pioneering conservation initiative -- as the island nation plans to completely ban commercial fishing in its vast ocean territory. 01:15 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins