Observation: How many Domesticated Wild Animals Do You Know are Being Quarantined Under the Ban? That’s a Shocking Number
2020/2/13 14:53:00 本站

Like SARS in 2003, the Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia in Wuhan was also caused by wild animals.


If we take a longer look, in the past century, there have been four influenza epidemics with a large number of deaths, three of which have all come from China, such as the Asian influenza in 1957, which was first found in western Guizhou in February of that year, then infected the whole world through Hong Kong and Southeast Asia, and the remaining two are the SARS in 2003 and the new epidemic in the last winter and this spring.


The distance between wild animals and human infectious diseases has never been so close as it is today.


On January 26th, in order to prevent the spread of the epidemic situation, the State Administration of Market Supervision, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs and the State Forestry and Grass Administration jointly announced that during the epidemic period, the trade of wild animals should be suspended and all places for breeding wild animals should be isolated. On February 3rd, in response to the illegal trade of wild animals and the illegal production and sale of masks during the epidemic, the State Administration of Market Supervision once again cooperated with the central network information office, the Ministry of Ecological Environment, the Ministry of Public Security, the Ministry of Commerce, the State Forestry and Grass Administration and other 10 ministries to deploy the crackdown action.


The suspension of the national wildlife trade means that all its transportation and trading activities are stopped, and all the places for breeding wildlife in the country are isolated. So how many wild animals have been temporarily isolated? What should they do after the outbreak?


In order to find out the quantity of wild animals domesticated and bred in China, because there is no public data statistics, and the management is divided into forest, agriculture, market supervision, and other departments, the author first excluded the cultivated aquatic wild animals and domestic animals, and only considered the quantity of terrestrial vertebrate wild animals for the time being. After all, the forestry department is directly responsible for the management of wild animal domestication and reproduction.


According to the division of responsibilities, the forestry departments at all levels shall be responsible for the examination and approval of wild animal domestication and breeding, the certificate of trade, sale and utilization, and the agricultural departments shall be responsible for quarantine. However, it is a pity that on the official websites of forestry departments at all levels, it is difficult to find the statistics of the number of wild animals domesticated by land vertebrae in the whole country or in a certain region, and even the number of artificial domestication and breeding farms is rarely disclosed.


On the contrary, some reliable data can be found from the papers reported by the public media and the discussion on the artificial domestication and breeding industry in the relevant provinces and cities.


Taking Yunnan as an example, in the article "current situation and development strategy of wild animal domestication and breeding industry in Yunnan Province" written by Yang Dong and Yang Guowei, it is disclosed that in 1999, there were only 80 enterprises engaged in wild animal domestication and breeding in Yunnan Province; 242 were newly approved in 2000 - 2007; after 2008, the industry developed rapidly. By the end of 2011, there were 840 relevant enterprises in Yunnan Province, raising and breeding 1,722,500 wild animals, mainly pheasants, Quasipaa Spinosa, butterflies, wild pigs, blue peafowl, Macaca fascicularis, macaques, sika deer, ostriches, black bears, etc.


In this year’s Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia epidemic, according to media reports, Yunnan Province has 3,433 wildlife breeding sites, nearly three times more in 10 years. If the number of wild animals that are domesticated and propagated increases in the same proportion, the number of wild animals in captivity in Yunnan Province will exceed 6 million.


An expert who once participated in the technical evaluation of artificial domestication and breeding farms in the central province said that “the number of domestication and breeding in each province is certainly not small”. For example, an approved snake farm usually has tens of thousands of snakes; an ostrich farm has 100-500 of them; a Sika deer farm has 20-200 of them; and in general, the number of breeding white bone roof and wild geese can reach to 500 -10000. “In this way, the farm can survive,” the expert said.


If we extend it to 31 provinces, cities and autonomous regions in China, the total amount of terrestrial vertebrate wild animals that are artificially domesticated and propagated can easily reach tens of millions of levels, which does not include relatively domesticated and mature species breeding farms such as aquatic animals that are artificially domesticated and propagated, pigs, cattle, chickens and ducks. Such a large number of farms and wild animals are closely associated with modern life. If the management is lax, scattered, or even illegal, is it not planting a time bomb for human health and social health?


The utilization of wild animals after domestication and reproduction is mainly for food, medicine, fur products and people’s enjoyment (such as cage birds, cricket fighting). Are these needs really necessary for human beings? Is this industry really the so-called “sunrise industry”? In the current situation of small-scale industry, weak technical force, poor environment, which is easy to cause human and animal diseases and infections, there are even several domestication farms poaching wildlife resources. Do we still need to regard it as a key industry of the forestry port? When can we really focus on protection rather than the endless use of inertia thinking?


It is estimated that 78% of the world's new infectious diseases are related to wild animals. If we don’t think about the current situation of wild animal domestication and reproduction and completely change it, it's not hard to imagine that the whole society will still be unable to avoid the next epidemic outbreak.



(Photo source: Internet)

Original Chinese article:


By / Xue Tongtong