Poachers of Pangolins
Poachers across Indonesia sell live pangolins to middlemen for US$28 to US$31 per kilo; the average size of a single animal being 6 to 7kg. In 2014 the Sunda pangolin was listed as critically endangered on the IUNC Red List of Threatened Species. Earlier this year on January 26th, 125 kg of pangolin scales were intercepted by Indonesia authorities on route to Hong Kong.
One poacher tells us that he wouldn’t have to go hunting, if he got paid a decent salary working on the plantation. The average monthly wage for working a full time job on a palm oil plantation is US$47. “I can get 10 times that if I can catch a few pangolins. I have a family to support. When I first started hunting a few years ago, there were only a few hunters around. These days, almost everyone goes hunting. Also, there are no forests anymore. It’s getting harder and harder to find wildlife.”