Combatting Poaching & Illegal Trade
End snow leopard poaching
Combating illegal wildlife trade and poaching is one of the Priority areas of GSLEP. To address this threat, GSLEP and it’s partners have developed the following initiatives.
Global Snow Leopard Illegal Wildlife Crime Database
Illegal Wildlife Trade (IWT) has continued to be a prominent threat to snow leopards globally. Poaching for snow leopard fur and even bones has been reported across the range. However, several dimensions of this threat such as the magnitude, the scale, regions where poaching is common, are largely unknown.
To gain a better understanding of the nature of poaching and IWT in the snow leopard range, GSLEP along with its partner organizations have established the Global Snow Leopard Illegal Wildlife Crime Database. Data on poaching and illegal wildlife trade are not limited to snow leopards, but extend to all species that are found in the snow leopard range. The purpose of the database is to collect information on IWT from across the snow leopard range. It will be used to improve conservation efforts to address this threat through improved data collation, information generation, information sharing, and international cooperation.
Individuals or organizations can submit a First Information Report (FIR) under the tab “submit data”. Persons’ submitting the FIR will receive a follow-up email requesting more information.
Your information on IWT and poaching can become a part of the shared global effort to combat this threat. Every bit of information counts.
In partnership with the Government, the Snow Leopard Trust and the Snow Leopard foundation in Kyrgyzstan initiated a citizen rangers rewards program in the Kyrgyz Republic in the year 2014. The program rewards citizens and rangers involved in confiscating arms and/or apprehending wildlife crime in and around Protected Areas of the Kyrgyz Republic. Genuine cases are reviewed by an independent committee before they are rewarded with a cash award along with a certificate. An annual event is organized on the World Wildlife Day were citizens and rangers receive the awards in the auspicious presence of the Environment Minister, members of parliament, ambassadors and representatives from national and international organizations. So far the program has rewarded 71 rangers from across the country.
Crime Investigation training
Poaching and Illegal Wildlife Trade continue to remain a threat to snow leopards and its prey. Often the under-resourced and underfunded wildlife conservation sector leads to a lack of trained personnel and equipment. The need of capacity building for frontline staff has been earmarked by all range countries. The lack of sufficient equipment and lack of respect for their positions often creates conditions conducive for corruption. This lack of capacity leads to low conviction rates for cases pertaining to wildlife crime. In partnership with INTERPOL, and with support from UK IWT Challenge Fund, the Snow Leopard Trust and Snow Leopard Foundation in Kyrgyzstan developed a corps of local trainers who were trained to provide workshops on wildlife crime scene investigation. The local trainers have been trained over multiple training sessions and are provided periodic refresher workshops to maintain their knowledge and skills up to date. The training and capacity building program has also provided crime scene investigation toolkits to Protected Areas that in turn improve their ability to investigate cases pertaining to wildlife crime.