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New report proves bear bile farming fuels wild poaching

Interviews with Vietnamese bear bile farmers revealed 67% admitted to supplementing their stocks with wild bears. Almost all the farmers agreed that breeding bears was difficult with 91% saying they did not know of anybody who had done so successfully.

ANIMALS ASIA: ‘It is an often-cited theory that farming wild species can help protect wild populations. The idea has been flouted for everything from rhino horn and tiger bones to bear bile, but in the case of bears, evidence consistently reveals farming to have had the opposite effect. A new study, led by Free the Bears published this month in the journal Oryx, has found the same results. Frank interviews with Vietnamese bear bile farmers revealed 67% admitted to supplementing their stocks with wild bears. Almost all the farmers agreed that breeding bears was difficult with 91% saying they did not know of anybody who had done so successfully…

Bear bile farming has been illegal in Vietnam since 1992, but it wasn’t until 2005 that species specific legislation was enacted and all captive bears in the country were micro-chipped to discourage poaching. While over 4,000 bears were recorded in 2006, today the number stands between 800 and 900… In 2017, the Vietnamese government announced an agreement with Animals Asia to close every bile farm and transfer the remaining 800-900 bears to sanctuary by 2022. Animals Asia’s Vietnam Director Tuan Bendixsen said: “The interviews with farmers show widespread and blatant illegality which the authorities haven’t been able to control and we can take this to them as evidence that they have to do more”. SOURCE…

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