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Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM):
If you practice TCM, please let your doctor or herbalist know
how strongly you feel about not using any medicines derived from
endangered species. Check to see if the store where you buy your
medicines and herbs sell any tiger parts or any pills labeled as
being made from tiger bones.
The 1998 Rhinoceros and
Tiger Product Labelling Act prohibits "the sale, importation and
exportation of products intended for human consumption or
application containing or labelled or advertised as containing,
any substance derived from any species of rhinoceros or
Do not patronize stores that sell
these products, and if you feel comfortable doing so, you may
want to inform the proprietors of such stores that selling tiger
products is illegal and will cost them your business.
f you have friends or family who practice TCM, please let
them know, as respectfully and politely as possible, how
critically endangered tigers are and that there are alternatives
within TCM to tiger based medicines. Do not criticize TCM or get
into a debate with them about its scientific validity, this will
only make them discount whatever else you have to say-this is
especially important if you are of Western descent.
If you are in communication with people in China you may want
to inform them of the almost hopelessly precarious state of the
indigenous South China subspecies and the terrible state of the
tiger in general. The tiger is such an important and ubiquitous
cultural symbol that many in Asia simply take it for granted
that the forests and jungles of China are still stalked by the
great "King of Beasts." The realization that tigers
may soon exist only in pictures and legends often comes as a
sobering shock, and may help awaken more people to the need to
Cultural factors can be powerful forces in conservation, sometimes
more powerful than economic or political concerns.
From: Tigers in the Snow by Peter Matthiessen.
Introduction and Photographs by Maurice Hornocker. North
Point Press: New York. 2000.
Asian Conservation Awareness
is a multi media, international campaign of US based ,
in partnership with local wildlife groups, to reduce consumer demand
for endangered species products. ACAP works with all sections of
society to produce innovative educational campaigns to raise
awareness of the threats to wildlife due to consumer demand. The
campaign is summarized
by the slogan,
the buying stops, the killing can too."
ACAP's international ambassador is Jackie Chan:
One of the
most serious problems for some wild animals and plants, is
the international illegal trade in their body parts. Rhino
horn, elephant ivory, tiger bone, turtle shell and bear gall
bladder are all examples of wild animal products used for
traditional cures, exotic foods and luxury goods . . .
Nowhere is this demand greater than in Asia, and among Asian
communities worldwide where traditional consumption of wildlife
products has increased with economic development. In Asia we have
already lost many populations of these animals forever. And so, we in
Asia have a special duty to help protect our natural heritage.
In the past consumers of these products were often unaware of the
part they play in the destruction of wild populations, but it is the
buyers who indirectly pay the poachers and smugglers to kill the
animals, and it is only through the consumer that we can stop the
You too can help me to help the animals. Spread the word of what is
happening. You may have an elderly relative or may know someone that
might use an endangered species product as a cure or who might buy
endangered wildlife souvenirs while on holiday. They might want to buy
an ivory hanko or name stamp.
Ask them to think first. Do they really want to be responsible for
the cruel killing of an individual animal and to contribute to the
extinction of the species? Don't they know that there are herbal
alternatives to endangered animals in traditional Chinese medicine?
And do they really need that endangered species product? There is no
Please help me to protect wildlife . . .
When the buying stops, the killing can too.
For the full text of
Jackie Chan's message, please click here.
Forever Tigers Store
Forever Tigers has donated $500 worth of clothing to the
forest guards at Corbett National Park in India.
Forest Guards at India's Corbett National Park
wearing Forever Tiger Caps.
These are the men who protect the wild tigers, elephants and
other wildlife at Corbett from poachers.
© Gideon Egger 2004. Taken at
Bandhavgarh, February 2004
For each item purchased from
Tigers Store, we receive a
contribution, which will be used to offset the costs of this
and other programs.
Volunteering Your Time for the Tiger
Saving Wild Tigers is run by the
Sierra Club Tiger Volunteers,
who are always looking for dedicated volunteers who want to make a
difference for the tiger.
Please realize that the living conditions in rural areas near the
tiger are very difficult and it takes a long time to adapt to the
local culture before being any help to the tiger. However, if you
think that you have the dedication to make a long term commitment
and/or have special technical skills or background to help the tiger
on-site, please contact them with a detailed résumé and they will
do their best to hook you up with an appropriate conservation
program in South Asia.
Generally, it is far more effective to take up the tiger's cause
while living in your own cultural element. For example, if you live
in a developed country, the optimum way to volunteer your time is
probably to raise resources for conservation activities. No effort
is too small in this regard since the dollar (or yen, Euro, Sterling
....) has a tremendous purchasing power in the tiger's habitat. Even
if you don't succeed in raising big bucks, your efforts will pay off
in terms of raising awareness.
For more information, please see the Sierra Club Tiger Volunteers
Please notify us at firstname.lastname@example.org
of sites that sell or promote the use of "Hu Gu" (tiger
bone) or any other tiger parts. Also, please let us know about
incidents that should be recorded in our Hall of Shame.
Hall of Shame
As of April 2004, we have found
the following sites, which sell or promote the use of tiger
An article, The
Herbs of the Eight Extraordinary Meridians, lists Hu Gu
as a treatment for arthritis.
- Angel Herb of Modena, New
York sells a product called Du
Zhong Hu Gu Wan
for the treatment of "chronic pain in the joints,
lumbago, joint stiffness, fatigue, and feeling of cold in
the limbs, pale face, impotence and dizziness."
- The Chinese DaMo Qigong
web site lists Hu Gu among "Prominent
Chinese Herbal Formulas Used for Effectively Treating
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)."
- The Songqing Zhu web
site lists "musk and tiger bone plaster" among
the outpatient treatments for Lumbar
Time in Singapore,
Singapore's unofficial food page, lists a "Traditional
chinese tiger recipe" that calls for:
10 oz of tiger meat
1 oz of 1000 year old gingseng
2 slices of ginger
5 tiger claws
1 tiger penis (optional, depending on availability)
2 teaspoon of the finest chinese wine
100g of tiger bone grind to powder
The same recipe also was on
but it has been removed due to protest.
- Deutsche Presse-Agentur, August 15, 2002,
Islamic party orders shooting of tigers on sight, Kuala Lumpur
Malaysia's hardline Islamic party has issued an
order to shoot tigers on sight, saying that the endangered
species was "better off dead" . . . . The move to kill
all wild tigers would involve a two-month mission in the jungles
of the northeastern state of Kelantan, which is ruled by the
opposition Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS). "Malaysia already
has far too many tigers," Nik Aziz Nik Mat, the state's
chief minister, was quoted as saying by the Star daily.
"The point is, tigers must not be in (Kelantan) anymore.
They are better off dead. I agree that they should be shot for
there is no use in keeping them alive," he said. He said
the decision was made to protect humans whose farming and
agriculture activities were increasingly encroaching into the
animals' jungle habitat, adding that the welfare of tigers
"cannot be above that of humans". Nik Aziz, who is
also PAS' spiritual leader, cited the high maintenance cost for
the tigers as another reason for approving the move. "The
country's money could be put to better use like providing
education and other social amenities," he said. However,
PAS' announcement came under fire from international wildlife
group, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), who claimed that
the move was "ridiculous and simply unacceptable".
"This is a green light for assassination of the species,
and it reflects total ignorance of just how few tigers are left
not only in Malaysia but in the world," said WWF spokesman
Teoh Teik Hoong.
- In 1998, Fuji (Japan) TV
broadcast a gourmet show in which TV personalities feasted
on an endangered Bengal tiger. On the show, three TV
personalities dined on Bengal tiger
with green peppers, served Cantonese style at a restaurant
in Shanghai, China. Two of the three said the tiger was
"delicious." The lone criticism during the show came from Midori
Utsumi who said tiger meat was "stringy." After
the meal was finished, a live Bengal tiger was brought into
the restaurant and paraded around the table to the delight
of the three TV talents. They took turns petting the tiger
and made comments to the effect that they hoped the beast
was not angry about their dining on one of its brethren. SOURCE: Seattle Times July 13, 1998.
- News Flash from Indianjungles.com:
23 Tiger Skins Seized in China
Reuters reported on Nov 27 that Chinese police had arrested three
men smuggling the pelts of tigers, leopards and sea otters over the
border from Myanmar into southeast China's Yunnan province, state
China Central Television (CCTV) showed the men, two Chinese
nationals and one from Myanmar, standing handcuffed next to the
hides of rare Bangladeshi tigers discovered on their truck.
The men pretended their cargo was jellyfish, CCTV said. Forest
police in Baoshan city, 350 km (200 miles) from the provincial
capital of Kunming, caught a Chinese driver but allowed him to
proceed to neighbouring Xiaguan city in order to catch the buyers
meeting the truck, according to CCTV.
It said police found the hides of 23 tigers, 33 leopards and 134
sea otters, which fetch high prices at illegal markets in Chinese
and illegal traffic in tiger parts:
If you have any knowledge of poaching,
trading in tiger parts, or selling of tiger parts, you can
contact the local authorities or contact TRAFFIC,
the international wildlife trade monitoring partnership between
the World Wildlife Fund (WWF)
and the World Conservation Union (IUCN).
Write a letter:
Read about the Shambala
Wild Animal Protection Act (will open new window), and if
you support it, write your legislator
Write an op-ed
for your local newspaper
Possible Points to make in an Op-ed
- Only 5,000-7,000 wild tigers remain in the world, scattered
throughout parts of Asia from Siberia to India. Approximately
3,000 tigers are in India.
- In 1900 there were 8 subspecies of tigers in the world--now
there are only five. But soon there may be only four, because
the South China subspecies is on the very brink of extinction.
- Tigers are disappearing for several reasons: destruction of
habitat; poaching; disappearance of the animals tigers prey
- Tigers are important for many reasons: they are at the top
of the food chain of large ecosystems, and thus if they
disappear, that means that the whole ecosystem, with all its
plants, animals, and even the people who are dependent on
them, are threatened also; for thousands of years, tigers have
been a vibrant part of human cultural, religious and social
- What can readers of your op-ed do to help tigers? Many
- Request that Congress put pressure on U.S. corporations
and lending institutions such as the World Bank to cease
investing in projects throughout Asia that destroy tiger
- Learn more about efforts to conserve tigers in the wild
and take action to assist those efforts by:
- Joining letter-writing campaigns
- Circulating petitions
- Donating time and money to tiger conservation
- Promoting educational efforts in local Chinese
communities regarding the use of tiger body parts in
traditional medicine products as a way to help shut
- Visiting and learning about tigers at the local zoo
SOURCE: 5 Tigers: The
Tiger Information Center
gift subscriptions of Sanctuary magazine to India
Include a copy of William
Li's Tiger Button on your web site to remind people about
tigers and to encourage their conservation:
Make a donation to a
Tiger Conservation Organization