Why in news:
Recently a Chinese news agency reported the seizure of over 10 tons of pangolin scales in the eastern Chinese city of Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province.
About the animal:
- Pangolins, nocturnal animals that feast on ants and termites.
- It is believed that its scales possess magic or charms, medicinal benefits and they are used as a culinary delicacy.
- They are said to be the most trafficked wild animal in the world.
- It is the only scaly mammal on the planet.
- Of the eight species of pangolin worldwide, two species are found in India.
- They are Chinese pangolin, mostly found in northeast India and Indian pangolin.
- It can also curl itself into a ball as self-defence against predators.
- The colour of its scales varies depending on the colour of the earth in its surroundings.
- IUCN status of Chinese pangolin – Critically endangered
- IUCN status of Indian pangolin – Endangered