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Study uncovers Facebook trade in wild animals
The most commonly listed animal was the Sundra slow loris, which was illegally traded as a pet and prop for tourists.

Over 1,500 animals listed for sale in Thailand 

A study by the wildlife group TRAFFIC has found more than 1,500 live animals listed for sale on Facebook in Thailand.

Researchers monitored a dozen Facebook groups for 30 minutes a day, over 23 days in 2016.

A follow-up study in 2018 revealed that 10 of these groups remained, of which one had become a secret group. Membership had nearly doubled, from 106,111 to 203,445.

Out of 200 species being sold, 47 per cent were not protected under Thailand’s primary wildlife legislation, in many cases because they were not native to the country. Most were mammals, birds and reptiles.

The most commonly listed animal was the sunda slow loris, which was illegally traded as a pet and prop for tourists. In total, researchers saw 139 listed for sale.

Other animals being sold included a critically endangered helmeted hornbill and 25 Siamese crocodiles.

In light of the research, TRAFFIC urged Thai authorities to close legal loopholes and bolster current enforcement efforts.

Image by Dick Culbert from Gibsons, B.C., Canada/CC BY 2.0/Wikimedia Commons


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Stephen Fry lends voice to frog conservation film

News Story 1
 Comedian and author Stephen Fry has lent his voice to a new animation that hopes to raise awareness of deadly ranavirus, which is threatening the UK’s frogs.

Research by ZSL, who created the short film, suggests that at least 20 per cent of ranavirus cases over the past three decades, could be attributed to human introductions. This includes pond owners introducing fish, frog spawn and plants from other environments.

Amphibian disease expert Dr Stephen Price said: “People can help stop the spread by avoiding moving potentially infected material such as spawn, tadpoles, pond water and plants into their own pond. Disinfecting footwear or pond nets before using them elsewhere will also help.” 

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BVA Welsh Branch elects new president

Veterinary surgeon Ifan Lloyd was elected president of the BVA Welsh Branch at its AGM on 25 June.

Ifan has worked mainly in mixed practice since graduating from Cambridge University in 1988. He was a partner at St James Veterinary Group for 23 years and has continued to work part time at the practice since retiring in 2017.

He is passionate about animal health and disease eradication. He is a director of Cefn Gwlad Solutions, a company set up to lead bovine TB programmes in collaboration with other stakeholders. He is also director of lechyd Da (gwledig), the bTB testing delivery partner in South Wales.

Ifan said, “As a founding member of BVA Welsh Branch I am honoured and delighted to be elected as President. I have been passionate about representing the veterinary profession in Wales for many years and I plan to use this experience to represent my colleagues to the best of my abilities.”