Australasian Regional Partnership Strategy 2014 – 2017
What does the partnership involve?
Nine Zoo and Aquarium Association (ZAA) Institutional Members have joined in partnership with the Southeast Asia Regional office of TRAFFIC, the wildlife trade monitoring network.
The project aims to collaboratively:
- enhance the identification and disruption of transnational, organised criminal networks illegally trading in wildlife across different commodities and species
- Showcase Zoo and Aquaria industry best practice in relation to wildlife trade
- Utilise zoo-based data and expertise to reduce the impacts of trade on global biodiversity
- Empower visitors, relevant communities and wider stakeholder networks to take positive action to combat illegal wildlife trade
Why wildlife crime?
Illegal trade in wildlife represents the second greatest global threat to species survival behind habitat degradation (World Bank, 2005; WWF, ndc).
In many regions, wildlife trade is the single greatest direct threat to numerous threatened species of bears, rhinos, elephants, Tigers, pangolins, rays, predatory fish, mollusks, corals, songbirds and many more (e.g. Davis et al, 1995; Nooren and Claridge, 2001; Oldfield, 2003, World Bank, 2005).
Used in Traditional Asia Medicine (TAM), restaurant dishes, for fashion or decorative items or as pets, wildlife trade is driven by a combination of high consumer demand and resulting high market prices coupled with weak legislation and consequential penalties. It is also exacerbated by a lack of enforcement as a result of inadequate prioritisation, resources and / or training and, in some cases, corruption.