Pangolins, Earth’s Most Beautiful and Trafficked Creatures, Finally Get Protection

Image: AP
Image: AP

The pangolin is the only known mammal with scales. Pangolins are beautiful, precious little creatures, often likened to an artichoke with legs. According to NPR, they’re also the world’s most trafficked mammals. Luckily for these little cuties, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, or CITES, has officially banned commercial trading of pangolins.

Advertisement
Image: AP
Image: AP

NPR reported last year that “the animal has long been prized for its scales, which are used in traditional Chinese medicine.” Pangolin meat is also considered a luxury in China and Vietnam.

Advertisement

In CITES’ ban, the organization writes that “there were at least 153,434 seizures and trade records” of pangolins between July 2000 and July 2015.

Let’s celebrate these babies getting the protection they deserve, by looking at these very cute pictures and videos. Aw.

Image: AP
Image: AP
Advertisement
Image: Shutterstock
Image: Shutterstock

Happy Friday!

[NPR]

Advertisement

Eve Peyser was the night editor at Gizmodo.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter

DISCUSSION

ctrexpope
C.T. Rex Pope

In 2012, in Pemba Mozambique, I helped rescue a pangolin from the black market! (that’s me and him/her).

After an undercover mission to determine that black market pangolins were for sale, my partner and I in cooperation with the Quirimbas national park’s office, the Ministry of Agriculture, and the Police, successfully apprehended an illegal animal trader and his pangolin.

But before we could release him into the wilds of the park, we had to keep him over night in our hotel bathroom. He promptly escaped from his basket and broke several glasses and a mosquito net, before he decided to return to the bathroom. He was pretty awesome.

We safely released him the next day next to a giant termite mount in the national park.