Protecting Pangolins

by David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins
Protecting Pangolins

Project Report | Jan 12, 2024
Protecting Pangolins - January Update

By Jo | Senior Fundraising Executive

Pangolin - Credit Wesley Harmann
Pangolin - Credit Wesley Harmann

Over the past six months, our partners have progressed conservation work in Cameroon, China, and Vietnam to build strong public support for further restrictions on wildlife trade and consumption, showcasing the pangolin as the representative animal for these campaigns. This work is complemented by species-specific campaign messaging to discourage the use of pangolin products.

The team recently completed production on a communications campaign to promote sustainable and humane tourism, while reducing the consumption of bushmeat and wildlife products. They have also launched a new campaign to persuade people to “Say No to Pangolin Meat”, led by traditional tribal leaders. A TV series about conservation issues has also been developed, focusing on debates about conservation, including pangolins and bushmeat consumption – all discussed under the call to action, “protect our forests and the animals that live there.”

Thanks to your support, DSWF funding has helped our field partners reach millions of people throughout China and Vietnam, with significant exposure to pangolin campaign materials through both online and out-of-home media – gaining repeated exposure to messages not to buy or use pangolin scales or meat. Based on the results of previous campaigns, we are confident these efforts will help reduce the demand for pangolin scales and bushmeat, which should subsequently drive down value and incentives for poachers, ultimately reducing the number of animals poached annually.

In Vietnam, a recent rescue operation was conducted in which the team were alerted, and the rapid response team dispatched in the middle of the night to rush to the rescue of a newborn pangolin. The pangolin baby was expected to be only 3-5 days old and as such, in critical condition. Since arriving at the rescue centre, the baby (now stable) is being closely monitored and provided with special around the clock care by specialised veterinarians. We look forward to keeping you updated on their progress.

In Kenya, the pangolin guardian team have been busy increasing awareness with local households surrounding the Nyekweri ecosystem. Communities are asked to report all pangolin sightings to the team so they can be monitored and protected. Two local children had recently been out looking for a lost cow and instead came across a rather large pangolin. The pangolin guardians were alerted and the on-call rapid response team quickly mobilised and headed out to the location. 

The children had managed to shepherd the pangolin into a rural house, its mud walls acting as a safe corral for the pangolin. The team quietly approached the pangolin and safely measured and weighed the pangolin as they provided a health check. "It was huge!" recalls guardian Joshua Omele who then commented "we realised we were very much in the presence of a giant!", identifying the species as a giant pangolin. Most pangolins in a confined space will stop in the corner and roll up but this pangolin surprised the team by standing up and climbing the wall. He was taller than a grown man – an astonishing 195cm in length and weighing in at approximately 43kg. He was given a clean bill of health by the veterinary team, and with that, he was gently ushered out into the safety and refuge of the forest.

Sightings like these are vital for the team to document the pangolins’ location, habitat, size, and health. This enables them to refine population estimates, range extension, and to plan protection strategies. Community awareness and engagement is key to this process. Community members who sight and report pangolins and see the team following up on the reports, builds confidence and it also helps to inform and engage the community in the protection of the pangolins.

Thank you for your support enabling us to tip the scales in favour of the pangolin.

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Pangolin - Credit Wesley Harmann
Pangolin - Credit Wesley Harmann
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Organization Information

David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation

Location: Guildford, Surrey - United Kingdom
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @DSWFwildlife
Project Leader:
Lawrence Avery
Guildford , Surrey United Kingdom
$17,674 raised of $43,115 goal
373 donations
$25,441 to go
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