BANGKOK 3 October, 2011 – The Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation has stepped up its anti-wildlife trade efforts. Aside from intercepting animal smuggling at border areas, a special body will set up to watch out for wildlife trade in the capital.
The National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department chief Damrong Pidej revealed that he had assigned officials to inspect pet shops in Chatuchak Market to look out for wildlife traders. An office has been set up so that they can monitor the activity in the area more closely. The officials will work on a daily basis.
According to the department deputy chief Theerapat Prayoonsit, the move came after complaints of blatant sales of wild animals in Chatuchak Market where protected species such as flying squirrels, woodpeckers, and slow Loris are offered at high prices.
The assigned authorities have the right to arrest those involved in the activity. Buyers of wild animals face a jail term of up to three years or a fine of 30,000 THB or both.