The hospital room was heated like a pangolin’s den. The patient, Lumbi, was fed a syringe with a protein -rich smoothie, given daily medication and checked for serious symptoms.
Lumbi is being treated for a blood parasite after he was rescued from traffickers during a police raid in North Limpopo late last year.
He and several other pangolins in the room are patients of Johannesburg Wildlife Veterinary Hospital, which was established in 2016 to care for and rehabilitate wild animals.
They were confiscated from poachers in South Africa and neighboring countries, including Namibia, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.
Many pangolins were in a critical condition when they were rescued and needed medical care, after being kept in bags and shoes for weeks without food and care. no water.
“It’s like an ICU (intensive care unit) for pangolins,” said Nicci Wright, a veterinary surgeon who travels to Lumbi.
Pangolins are kept in a secret place during storage, taking something from weeks to months, before being released into the wild.
Although pangolins have lived for about 80 million years, little medicine knows about them.
Pangolins ‘like humans’
“They’re very different from other animals. They’re real,” said Wright, who has worked with pangolins since 2008.
Sometimes, doctors have to take different types of treatment to give the right medicine.
“Natural medicine and the treatment process are not well documented and there is very little real knowledge about African cultures,” Wright said.
Vets prescribe common medications used in other mammals such as cats and dogs. They often do.
“Sometimes you have to take a moment, and now we’ve taken the right opportunities and we’ve been very active and they’ve responded very well,” Dr. Kelsey Skinner said.
“It’s just a flight of faith every time you try something,” Skinner, 30, said after giving Lumbi his daily medications.
After treating sick pangolins for several years, Skinner realized that, like humans, they are different.
The fur is eaten by babies, lonely, nocturnal animals.
“They’re like people.
“Some of them are shy. They don’t want to be touched. Some people are out and play in the dirt. They are magical,” he said.
“The level of personalities is like interacting with different people.
Mammals are widely traded
Pangolins are considered the most traded mammals in the world. They are praised for their scales – which are made with keratin, like human nails – which are used in Asia for what they consider to be medicinal properties.
Seen only in the wild in Asia and Africa, their numbers are declining under pressure from poaching. Some types of dogs are considered dangerous.
The number of pangolins left in the world is unknown.
The board keeps Lumbi at home, and to this day, a pangolin named Steve. Last month, Steve was released back into the woods, where he was, after a full recovery.
Gareth Thomas is a volunteer pangolin walker who visited Steve every week during the seven months of preparation for his release.
“I’ve been with him since day one. I was there when he was pulled out of the box by the poachers,” he said of one of their last trips before noon. the release.
After a six-hour drive, Steve was released into the 23,000-acre Manyoni Game Reserve in southern KwaZulu-Natal.
The Pangolin monitor released Donald Davies from the Zululand Conservation Trust in a specially designed box from the car, with Steve inside and unpacked.
With two telephones strapped to his scales, the pangolin cautiously walked outside, kissing, and just went to find the steps for lunch.
“He has all the skills he needs to survive in the wild right now,” Davies said.
Releasing them into the wild is an important task to ensure the survival of mammals is eliminated after the value of their care and rehabilitation is increased.
“The release process is one of the most important, because it has to be done right,” Wright said.
Pleasure items can only be kept in a safe place, such as a well -sealed personal playground, to prevent them from falling back into the custody of thieves.
And besides, living is right. “We need to make sure they’re getting the right food. They’re looking for holes. Or they’ll just die.”
In South Africa, plans are made for a shelter for pangolins in danger
© 2022 AFP
Directions: Pangolins have a new chance at the S.African Health Center (2022, April 13) Retrieved 13 April 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-04-endangered- pangolins-fresh-chance-safrican.html
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