Asian elephants said at risk from Chinese demand for skin

The group Elephant Family said the threat is currently greatest in Myanmar.

24 April 2018 | 12:57

Source: Associated Press

  • Source: Associated Press
  • Last update: 24 April 2018 | 12:57

The group Elephant Family said the threat is currently greatest in Myanmar. (AFP Photo)

BANGKOK: A report by a British-based conservation group said rising Chinese demand for products made from elephant skin is driving poaching and posing a threat to Asia’s wild herds even greater than the ivory trade.

The group Elephant Family said the threat is currently greatest in Myanmar, but warns that the Asian elephant could become extinct in half the areas where it ranges if the problem escalates. It said the threat exceeds that from the ivory trade because poachers are targeting any elephant, not just those with tusks.

The report’s authors said their research shows that the elephant’s skin is ground into powder and sold in China as a cure for stomach ailments, as well as being fashioned into beads for necklaces, bracelets and pendants.

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