Japanese Internet Auction Sites Awash In Ivory Listings
A survey of Japanese Internet auction sites conducted by Traffic (Japanese branch), an organization which monitors international animal trade, finds that more than 20 new illegal listings for ivory products are posted each day.
Trade of ivory is nearly entirely banned per the Washington Convention. This research reviewed auction listings of items made from exotic animals from two of Japan’s largest auction sites from March to June 2009. Researchers found ivory products listed for auction and that many of the other listings did not include the country of origin or other important information, suggesting that the items may be related to the illegal trade of animals or animal products.
Researchers counted a total of 1,306 new listings for ivory products during the survey period, as well as 543 items from turtle shells, seven items from tigers, and other listings related to 56 different types of live birds and lizards. During this period, there were active bids on 109 of the ivory items, and 11 of the items were offered for shipment overseas in direct violation of the international trade ban on ivory.
The average number of postings per week by item include 179 ivory products, 50 turtle shell items, 71.5 alligator and crocodile products, 44 caviar and sturgeon items, and 25.5 arowana fish listings.