Hundreds of traditional medicine shops selling products made from endangered bears

The Star Online, 29th May 2015


A sun bear at the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre. The sun bear is Malaysia’s only species of bear, and is facing threats from poachers, logging, plantations and urban development. Photo by CHAN TAK KONG/The Star, April 2014.

KUALA LUMPUR: Roughly half of over 300 Malaysian traditional medicine shops surveyed in 2012 were found selling illegal items made from endangered bears.

Wildlife monitoring group Traffic found that some 175 of 365 shops surveyed here were selling medicine made from bear gall bladder or bile.

“The rate was highest in Peninsular Malaysia, where 51% of the shops surveyed were found to sell bear products (or 148 shops),” the report named “Hard to Bear” said.

Products sold in these shops were found in many forms including whole bear gall bladders, bear bile pills, bile extract and many more.

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