Threat to Asian elephants 非法交易威胁大象生存

媒体英语会带大家一起学习 BBC 撰稿人在报道世界大事时常用到的单词和短语。

Image caption The Indian Elephant is one of four subspecies of the Asian Elephant, many of which are endangered

日前一项报告说,由于大象走私贩正在企图恢复他们在泰国旅游营地周围的赚钱行当,缅甸的亚洲野生象被置于恶劣的环境中。国际濒临绝种野生动植物贸易调查委员会(TRAFFIC)在他们发表的这篇报告里称,走私犯利用残酷手段野蛮地对待幼象。以下是Matt McGrathBBC 所做的报道:

Elephants are used to entertain foreign and domestic tourists at trekking camps all over Thailand. As visitors prefer younger animals, the value of elephant calves has soared to around $33,000 for a healthy specimen.

To meet this demand, smugglers in Myanmar capture and tame wild elephants from the country's shrinking herds. The young elephants are caught in pit-traps, cruelly beaten to break their spirits and then smuggled across the border. The Thai authorities have cracked down on this trade with some success over the past two years, but campaigners believe that criminals are now stocking up, ready to transport the animals once again, when restrictions end.

Traffic and other campaigners want to see a toughening up of the laws in Thailand. Elephants don't have to be registered there until they are eight years old, creating an opportunity for smuggled calves to be 'laundered' into the domestic population.

Asian elephants already face threats from habitat loss, agriculture and ivory poachers. According to researchers, the extra strain put on by the smuggling of live young elephants could threaten the long-term survival of the species in Myanmar.