The Complex Problem of Wildlife Trading

Sanjana Ramlakhan

China is home to many interesting street markets. The products range from food to numerous knick-knacks. However, China is also where many exotic animal products are being sold on the street. This is called wildlife trading, and for the most part, it is illegal in many countries. In fact wildlife trading has dated back to when we used to hunt animals for resources. But, since then we have learned how to farm and make food, such as bread.Therefore, wildlife hunting and trading is now not our only option for food. Continuing to hunt and trade animals however might result in animal extinction. 


One reason as to why wildlife trading is looked down on is because it involves wildlife hunting. Wildlife hunting is the act of seeking and then following this procedure by killing these wild animals. Animals are a key part of how the world works, and without them we would be in trouble. However, some people in China are still trading animals and causing them to go extinct. Animals such as the Rhino have gone extinct in China because of this wildlife trade. 


Wildlife trading in China has escalated from selling animals once in a while to selling them as a business. The shopkeepers selling these animals have started selling endangered species. This affects our food chain and our ecosystem. A 2014 study that took place in three Chinese cities found that out of Shanghai, Beijing and Ghungzhou, 34% of them ate wildlife.  Although that seems like a small amount alone, that is 34% out of 242,912,02 people. This population in China has grown since then, and still is, therefore the amount of people who eat wildlife are also growing. However people haven’t just been hunting Rhino, witnesses claim that China has been farming bears as well.This shows how different animals are affected by wildlife hunting.


This hunting can also have more drastic effects. Markets where animals are being sold could also be a place for diseases such as COVID-19. The animals in these street markets are at risk of other diseases as well.These diseases not only make the products that we get from them to be harmful, but also puts the people who buy such wildlife in danger. And of course, the animals that come from these markets are put at a risk of diseases as mentioned earlier.


Judith Mills, author of the book, Blood of The Tiger, remarks that “Today tiger farms are basically feedlots where tigers are bred like cattle to make luxury products including, tiger bone wine and tiger skin rugs.” These are also run as entertainment forms, such as zoos. The animals here however might be living in cramped and unsanitary conditions. Having animals live in these conditions is not only harmful for these animals but for the resources that we use from them. For example, having animals live in these conditions might make the products that we get from them unhealthy.


Sources claim that because of wildlife trading and the effects taking place on society, China has decided to place a temporary ban on wildlife trade. Placing this ban was a bold decision, if there hadn’t been something to motivate the shopkeepers into stopping they would have kept going. Therefore Covid - 19 was the perfect time to place the ban because people were scared of Covid. If they had placed it at any other time it could have caused the whole operation to go undercover, making it more dangerous in the long-term. Overall wildlife trade is bad for humans and animals, and can have an ongoing effect on society in both long-term and short-term. 


China is a great place to go for a holiday. Their unique and developed history makes China a perfect place for a tour. The wildlife market can have devastating impacts, such as the extinction of animals and the spread of diseases. Wildlife is important to have because it keeps the ecosystem in balance and even. From the things that we have done in the past, we can learn from those mistakes and improve them. 

  • Animals
  • Wildlife
  • environment
  • sustainability

More from the Seisen Post

First page of the PDF file: Middleschool
Delara Kshasthriva Rajaputhra

Ms. Sato offers tips for those transitioning into middle school.

New Teachers in 2023-24!
Dahyun Oh

Here is the introduction to eight among our nineteen new teachers in 2023-24 school year!