3 endangered tigers found dead in Indonesia conservation area
Three endangered tigers have been found dead in Indonesia’s conservation area on Sumatra island.
Authorities announced Friday that one adult Sumatran tiger and two of her cubs were found dead earlier in the week, killed by poacher traps in the Leuser Ecosystem Area, The Associated Press reported.
The mother and a female cub were found dead together while a male cub was found 15 feet away, Agus Arianto, who is in charge of the conservation agency, said.
“Setting traps for pigs in a conservation area is very unlikely,” Arianto said. “This was intended to poach endangered animals for economic gain.”
The three animals died from the wounds caused by the traps, with Arianto saying the agency will work with authorities to find those responsible, according to the AP.
Authorities have reported a rise in poachers of endangered animals amid the coronavirus pandemic with tigers and elephants being hunted down for financial gain, the AP noted.
Sumatran tigers are critically endangered, the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species says, with only 400 estimated to still be in the wild.
The killings come after two Sumatran tigers on Sumatra island in August were found to have contracted COVID-19.
The two tigers recovered from the virus, but it is unclear how they were able to contract it while the zoo has been closed to visitors and all staff have tested negative for the virus.
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