Thai wildlife officials from the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP) successfully relocated 137 tigers from a Buddhist temple in Bangkok. Earlier this week, the relocation process of tigers from the Thailand’s Tiger Temple was fully carried out.
Firstly, about 100 cats were removed from the Tiger Temple compound, and the rest of them were successfully relocated on Saturday. In total, 137 tigers were taken off from the place that had housed them for a long time.
As per the deputy director of Thailand’s Wildlife Conservation Office (WCO), Tuenjai Noochdumrong, has stated that all 137 Tigers are in good health, however considering the place where cats remained, Noochdumrong’s crew will perform “thorough check-ups on every tiger, to see if they are indeed in good condition.”
All giant cats remain now in a national sanctuary in Ratchaburi Province, a breeding center located in the south of Kanchanaburi Province. It is expected that tigers receive the best treatment in the new facility after being exposed to what might be considered as an assault to wildlife.
The last group of nine cats was relocated on Saturday, and the relocation process became slow when Bangkok’s weather temperatures got hot, said wildlife veterinarian of DNP, Patrol Maneen.
Federal officials charged five men, including three monks, with illegal wildlife possession after discovering remains of 40 dead tiger cubs in a freezer but also, it was found parts of other tigers, such as skin and teeth at the Buddhist temple.
Further, Noochdumrong said that his unit is collecting evidence related to the link between the five suspects and the foundation that runs Tiger Temple. The illegal wildlife possession charges will also be extended to the chief monk of the Buddhist temple, also known as ‘The Abbott,’ affirmed Noochdumrong.
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Five men accused of possession of endangered animal parts
On Thursday afternoon, Wildlife officers realized that two men were trying to leave from Thailand’s Tiger Temple facilities carrying with them different parts of endangered animal from the park. Once the investigation had started, three more people (monks from the temple) were found to be highly related to the case.
According to Tuenjai Noochdumrong, the deputy director of Thailand’s Wildlife Conservation Office (WCO), his crew found tiger skins, tiger teeth and dozens of containers holding remains of tiger cubs. This conclusive evidence was found inside a freezer.
“We found two pieces of tiger skin, eight to nine pieces of tiger teeth and about 800 to 900 ‘Ta Krud,’ and we are currently looking around the temple for more suspicious items,” said the director.
When referring to ‘Ta Krud,’ Noochdumrong pointed to small containers where pieces of tiger skin were hidden. Usually, people with the belief of becoming invincible when wearing animal’s dead parts, use these parts of tigers to make pendants for wearing them around the neck.
On their side, Temple’s members have said that the conditions under which cats are treated at the park are not the best ones. Still, Wildlife officers found a pendant made with tiger skin in the room of the temple’s chief monk. Currently, this feline pendant has disappeared.
Temple cover has set a nationwide alarm for trafficking
Noochdumrong has also said that the recent findings at the temple are alarming. He has described the discovery of-of the tiger skins and necklaces as a surprising one, and he adds that this situation has been likewise disturbing for the rest of the world. Further, the director of WCO has said that him, as well as his department, are “disgusted” about the findings, and he affirms that there are no excuses to justify such vile action.
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It seems like the-the parts of tigers, and the 40 newborn tiger cubs were intended for scientific purposes. The remains kept in containers were correctly preserved with formaldehyde, stated Noochdumrong. He also said that they are hardly investigating to bring the culprits to justice.
On Friday morning, Thai wildlife officials took the five suspects to a police station, but, few hours later, they were released on bail. The bond was set at $2,250 per person. Suspects were released while waiting for a prosecutor’s decision about the course of the case; a trial is uncertain at the present.
According to the deputy director general of the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP), Adisorn Noochdumrong, in a case of being convicted of the crime, suspects will face a four-year penalty in prison and a fine of $1,100.
Source: Free Press Journal