The last of the elusive pangolins

  1. The pangolin, which can be found all over India,especially North eastern states seems threatened as they are killed mercilessly because of its meat delicacy and scales, which are said to have medicinal value and are more expensive than gold.
  2. Pangolins also known as scaly anteaters because of their appearance, long tongues and are completely covered with scales made of keratin – also found in human nails.
  3. There are eight species found in India, China, south-east Asia and parts of Africa which are (a)Chinese pangolin (Critically Endangered) (b) Sunda pangolin (Critically Endangered) (c) Indian pangolin (Endangered) (d) Philippine pangolin(Endangered) and others are under vulnerable category.
  4. Up to 100,000 pangolins are estimated to be hunted and sold every year, making them the most traded wild animal in the world.Researchers warned that the Chinese pangolin is in danger of being “eaten to extinction” because of huge demand.
  5. This illegal trade takes place despite prohibitions under CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora).CITES also known as the Washington Convention is a multilateral treaty to protect endangered plants and animals.