Pangolins, also known as scaly anteaters, are eutherians, and unique placental mammals. There are eight existing species of pangolins in the world, four species of pangolins are native to Africa and four others are native to Asia. Indonesia is one of native range states for Sunda/Malayan pangolin (Manis javanica) in Southeast Asia, besides Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. In Indonesia, this species is distributed across Sumatra, Kalimantan and Java. Pangolins are also very slow breeders - each captive female is likely to only produce 1 young per lifetime, and the mortality rate is very high (1 in 5 captive conceived pangolins die each year).
Across its range the populations of the Sunda pangolin are thought to have heavily declined due to the illegal trade. Pangolins are thought to be the most traded mammal in the world and while once abundant across their range the illegal trade in pangolins is thought to have reduced the global population by up to 80% over the last twenty years. According to the IUCN Red List the population status of the Sunda pangolin has declined from ‘near threatened’ in 1996, to ‘critically endangered’ in 2014.
What we do?
- Law enforcement and policies strengthening: we are regularly giving technical support to authorities to combat pangolin trade from investigation to legal monitoring to ensure that the law has been enforced fairly & transparently.
- WCS Indonesia altogether with WCS global had been winning the battle to increase conservation status of Pangolin in CITES conference from Appendix II to Appendix I, which means pangolin trade is fully prohibited internationally.