Rare, endangered insects and spiders illegally for sale online

According to a team of researchers, endangered and vulnerable bug and spider species may be easily purchased online.
According to a new Cornell research, rare and threatened insects and spiders, as well as common species that perform vital ecological functions, can be acquired easily–without appropriate oversight–via basic online searches.
Insects and spiders are also used commercially, though we don’t typically think of them that way.
“Even if the risk to invertebrate species is clear, there is often a sociocultural perception that invertebrates are of less importance than vertebrate species and should therefore be prioritized lower for allocation of protection and conservation resources,” the researchers wrote.
For example, the Luzon peacock swallowtail, one of the rarest butterflies, is forbidden to trade and is designated as endangered both internationally and in the United States. It was discovered pinned in a display box for roughly $110 on Amazon.com.
Many species of live tarantulas, which are not endangered but whose trade is carefully regulated, have also been found for sale as pets without any inspection or enforcement.
The researchers showed 79 species mentioned on the three lists throughout their search, including seven species on the IUCN’s Red List, which only includes the severely endangered.
Two stick insect species were among them: a Gooty sapphire tarantula (Poecilotheria Metallica) for $232.50 on eBay and a Cyprus beetle (Propomacrus cypriacus) for $1,100.
A birdwing butterfly species named Ornithoptera allottei, which is classified on CITES Appendix 2, was the most costly insect they discovered for sale. At the time of the search, the pinned butterfly was advertised on eBay for $3,850.

Source Cornell University

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