Cambodia's Wildlife being obliterated by poachers with snares

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Rutiger
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Cambodia's Wildlife being obliterated by poachers with snares

Post by Rutiger » Sat Feb 27, 2016 5:03 pm

Cambodia’s ‘silent scourge’ ramps up
Sat, 27 February 2016
Brent Crane
Ten years ago Nick Marx, animal rescue director for Wildlife Alliance (WA), received a call from rangers in Kirirom National Park about a young Asiatic black bear caught in a snare. While trekking to free the cub, his team chanced upon a snare and disarmed it. Then they found another one. Then another and another.

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Before even reaching the animal, they had disarmed nearly 200 snares. Marx remembers one dangling the skeleton of a muntjak deer, picked clean and suspended like a haunted house chandelier.

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The bear was luckier. They managed to free the cub and transfer it to the Phnom Tamao wildlife sanctuary, where Marx also works. But an infection meant that a few days later its leg had to be amputated.

Marx says he has encountered countless such snare casualties since. “Snaring is the most indiscriminate and cruellest way of hunting there is,” he lamented this week after recounting the bear episode.

“It is an issue that isn’t considered important enough.” But things may be getting worse. A newer, more advanced snare recently found by patrolmen in Mondulkiri province suggests the destructive practice is ramping up here in both technology and scope.

The new snare has been most commonly spotted in Seima Protected Forest, near Vietnam. The new model possessed an upgraded design involving heftier metals and cable, according to Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) director Ross Sinclair, whose group advises government patrols in Seima.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
One of a new generation of snares found in Seima Protected Forest. wcs
“This is a new snare. None of our guys had seen them before,” he said. Previously, confiscated snares were made of simple materials, such as motorbike clutch or brake cables. These new snares, which rangers believe came from Vietnamese poachers, were made from much sturdier materials and, according to the WCS director, indicated a further “commercialisation” of the practice.

“Some of them would catch everything short of an elephant: big wild cattle, things that weigh a ton,” Sinclair explained at the WCS office while displaying one of the newly found heavy-duty traps. It was made of thick metal piping, with sturdy springs at one end, all of it rusted brown from sitting in wait on the jungle floor.

The snare cable, looped at one end to capture some unfortunate foot, felt unbreakable. The snare would be anchored to a strong tree, hidden by underbrush, with a trigger pad that, when stepped on, would set it off “like a giant spring”, said Sinclair.

Similar models had also been found by World Wildlife Fund (WWF)-assisted teams in two protected Mondulkiri forests adjacent to Seima, according to Moul Phath, WWF’s Eastern Plains Landscape manager.

There were other alarming advancements. Along with the more potent snares, rangers in Seima reported finding wiring set up around game trails designed to shock animals toward snares.

Rangers elsewhere in Mondulkiri had recently found snares that were themselves electrified, reported Phath. In increasingly deadlier ways, Cambodia’s protected forests are being systematically booby-trapped.

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Re: Cambodia's Wildlife being obliterated by poachers with snares

Post by hanno » Sat Feb 27, 2016 5:15 pm

Yes, terrible and they are everywhere; including around the then Chief-of-Police's house in a northern province.....
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Re: Cambodia's Wildlife being obliterated by poachers with snares

Post by willyhilly » Sun Feb 28, 2016 7:50 am

We used to go to Kirirom and there were always animal parts for sale by the side of the road.
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