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Sun Bear Legs Found On a Bus in Vietnam

Aug 02, 2016 09:20 PM EDT
Surabaya Zoo Works To Improve Animal Care Standards
A Sun bear soaks in water to escape the very hot temperature at Surabaya Zoo on May 13, 2014 in Surabaya, Indonesia. South East Asian Zoos Association (SEAZA) delegates and animal experts Prof. G. Agoramoorthy of Tajen University Taiwan, Sam Alagappasamy Chelleiyah of Singapore Zoo, and Dr. Kevin Lazarus of Taiping Zoo Malaysia, Jansen Manansang (former SEAZA President), and KRMT Joko Tirtono (Director of Gembiraloka Zoo Yogyakarta) are to share knowledge about how to handle animals properly. There has been an ongoing conflict within Surabaya Zoo internal management that has lead to numerous fatalities over the last four years due to malnourishment and improper housing.
(Photo : Photo by Robertus Pudyanto/Getty Images)

Eighteen Sun bear legs weighing 84 pounds were confiscated in a bus in the central province of Thanh Hoa in Vietnam.

Investigation has found that the bag of bear legs that was found on the 26th of July, which was boarded in Laos. However, the destination remains a mystery to police. Laos, a land on the Vietnam border with rich biodiversity and wildlife, is already known to be a place where there is noteworthy illegal wildlife activities. In fact, it is identified that china and other Asian countries are exploiting the natural resources of Laos.

Based on police interrogation that is done on this incident, the bus driver Dinh Hong Phuong who is 47, and the bus owner Bui Thien Loi aged 52, informed the police that a man had paid them to transport the bag from Laos to Vietnam. The bones as well as the bus are confisticated and taken for further investigation.

Sun bears are native to tropical forests of Southeast Asia and also parts of China, but they are endangered in Vietnam, where they are protected from hunters and predators. The decline of the bear is ascribed to deforestation and hunting of the bear for its body parts used in many places.
There are many cases when Asian black bears and sun bears are hunted for their bile, hands and legs which are used in traditional medicine and its paws are used to prepare bear paw soup, a delicacy in China and other places in Asia.

In Laos, there have been reported cases where Bears are hooked up to a catheter, with its fluid being cruelly extracted for different purposes. National Geographic investigated and reported on this issue with the help of the Australian organization, "Free the Bears" in Laos that saves bears from trade and poachers who kill the animal to sell the body parts.

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