Smugglers stuff Yellow-crested cockatoos in plastic bottles

May 6th, 2015 | by LubosTomiska
Smugglers stuff Yellow-crested cockatoos in plastic bottles
Conservation projects
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In today’s civilized world it’s really hard to imagine that somebody can still smuggle living parrots in plastic bottles. However, on this Monday 21 critically endangered Yellow-crested Cockatoos (Cacatua sulphurea) were confiscated from a smuggler in Indonesia, in water bottles.

According to the official press release there were also other cockatoos and some green parrots which officials from Indonesia’s Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA) couldn’t identify.

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Birds were found by officials at the Tanjung Perak port in the city of Surabaya in east Java. Police have immediately arrested the criminal who carrying parrots on a passenger ship from Makassar, Sulawesi.

Richard Thomas, Global Communications Co-ordinator at Traffic International said for CNN: “…this shows the lengths that some people will go to try to smuggle birds.”

“There’s a lot of demand for parrots and cockatoos in southeast Asia and Europe,” Thomas said. “They could well have been destined for markets there, although obviously it’s illegal for wild-caught birds to be exported.”

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Smugglers stuff endangered cockatoos into bottles

(c) Barcroft

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SURABAYA, INDONESIA - MAY 04: Yellow-crested cockatoo inserted in empty water bottles for illegal trade, are shown by police officials at Port of Tanjung Perak on May 4, 2015 in Surabaya, Indonesia.  Indonesian Police rescued 24 Yellow-crested cockatoo which were inserted in empty bottles for illegal trade.  PHOTOGRAPH BY Jefta Images / Barcroft Media UK Office, London. T +44 845 370 2233 W www.barcroftmedia.com USA Office, New York City. T +1 212 796 2458 W www.barcroftusa.com Indian Office, Delhi. T +91 11 4053 2429 W www.barcroftindia.com

(c) Barcroft

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SURABAYA, INDONESIA - MAY 04: Yellow-crested cockatoo inserted in empty water bottles for illegal trade, are shown by police officials at Port of Tanjung Perak on May 4, 2015 in Surabaya, Indonesia.  Indonesian Police rescued 24 Yellow-crested cockatoo which were inserted in empty bottles for illegal trade.  PHOTOGRAPH BY Jefta Images / Barcroft Media UK Office, London. T +44 845 370 2233 W www.barcroftmedia.com USA Office, New York City. T +1 212 796 2458 W www.barcroftusa.com Indian Office, Delhi. T +91 11 4053 2429 W www.barcroftindia.com

(c) Barcroft

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SURABAYA, INDONESIA - MAY 04: Yellow-crested cockatoo inserted in empty water bottles for illegal trade, are shown by police officials at Port of Tanjung Perak on May 4, 2015 in Surabaya, Indonesia.  Indonesian Police rescued 24 Yellow-crested cockatoo which were inserted in empty bottles for illegal trade.  PHOTOGRAPH BY Jefta Images / Barcroft Media UK Office, London. T +44 845 370 2233 W www.barcroftmedia.com USA Office, New York City. T +1 212 796 2458 W www.barcroftusa.com Indian Office, Delhi. T +91 11 4053 2429 W www.barcroftindia.com

(c) Barcroft

IUCN classifies the Yellow-crested Cockatoo as „Critically endangered“, they are also in CITES Appendix I. According to BirdLife statistics there are less than 7000 individuals living in the wild. Specifically we can find 3,200-5,000 on Sumba (although perhaps as few as 562 in 2012, Burung Indonesia in prep), 500 on Komodo, 200-300 on Timor Leste, 200-300 on Sulawesi, 20-50 on West Timor, 40-70 on Flores, 50-100 on Sumbawa, 100 on Rinca and c.700 other birds in total.

This species is together with the Red-vented Cockatoo (Cacatua haematuropygia) the most endangered cockatoo in the wild.

READ  African Grey parrots at the edge of extinction in Ghana

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Title photo: (c) Barcroft

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One Comment

  1. Gary Smith says:

    This is yet another example of the lengths desperately poor people will go to for money. It is a problem that will continue, especially in third world countries. Animal poaching as in the rhino can lead to such decimation that safe captive breeding can be the only guarantee against extinction. Then we have the problem of changed land use for food production in an ever growing over populated world. The long term future of many of our animals seems dire to me. However, Successful re population of endangered parrots in Brazil , for example shows how us humans can do the right thing.
    These pictures truly sickened me to the stomach. Let’s hope that at least by education and human compassion this mistreatment of parrots will eventually stop before it’s too late. Captive breeding in a caring environment may be the only chance to save many species in the future.

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