According to a report published at The Star Online on August 15, a total of 298 wire snares and 23 illegal camps set by poachers to trap animals, especially tigers, were discovered in jungles in Johor from January to July this year.
The discovery was made during a boots-on-the-ground-programme called Ops Belang, said state Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) director Salman Saaban.
Ops Belang, which was started by the government to protect tigers and their habitat as well as to combat poachers, is carried out in collaboration with the Johor Forestry Department and Johor National Parks Corporation.“We know where their hotspots are as we found many of the snares around the Panti Forest Reserve and Endau Rompin National Park during our patrols under Ops Belang, ” he said.
Salman pointed out that the poachers would buy tools such as wire cables from hardware shops to make the snares. He believed the poachers also received help from locals, who provided them with information. The poachers would stay in the jungle for one to two weeks, hoping to get an animal trapped in the snares. Although they did not rely on firearms to hunt the animals, they were usually armed with parangs and axes, he added.
Perhilitan believed that the poachers targeted certain animals such as tigers, as enforcement officers would sometimes find carcasses of wild boars, mouse deer and serow that were left untouched by the poachers.
“The price of a tiger can reach up to RM100, 000 in the black market,” he pointed out, adding that many of the poachers came from Indochina countries and worked in factories in Malaysia. Some of them had work permits while others entered the country illegally, he said. They hunt here in Malaysia because many animals are extinct back in their home countries …
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300 poaching traps found in Johor