Paradise Park and the World Parrot Trust host meeting on illegal wildlife trade with George Eustice MP
Ahead of the G7 meeting in Carbis Bay, Paradise Park and colleagues from the World Parrot Trust met with George Eustice MP, Secretary of State for the Environment. The UK holds the Presidency of the G7, and the subject of biodiversity and the illegal wildlife trade are high on the agenda.
From the Left: Alisa Davies, Wildlife Trade Specialist World Parrot Trust, Rowan Martin Ph.D. Africa Programme Director World Parrot Trust, George Eustice MP Secretary of State for the Environment, Nick Reynolds Director Paradise Park and Trustee of the World Parrot Trust.
G7 Environment Ministers met in May and made commitments on halting and reversing the loss of biodiversity. The World Parrot Trust can play a role by providing evidence of the illegal trade in wildlife, the way social media is promoting this, and solutions on how it can combatted.
Wildlife Charity based at Paradise Park
The World Parrot Trust, founded at Paradise Park in Hayle, Cornwall, is an international conservation organisation that has been protecting parrots around the world for over 30 years. Parrots are among the most threatened of all groups of birds in no small part due to their popularity as pets.
David Woolcock, Curator of Paradise Park and Trustee of the World Parrot Trust explains “The capture of wild parrots for the global pet trade has driven collapses in wild populations and much of our work at the World Parrot Trust has been focused on ending this mass trade. We spearheaded the successful campaign to stop imports of wild birds into the EU, and continue to work with partners around the world to conserve the world’s most endangered species.”
Opportunity for change
The escalating online trade in wildlife is a major threat to parrots, along with many other species. Given the global nature of this, the solution must be co-ordinated international action. Trading platforms must take responsibility for illegal actions online and real consequences must follow.
The G7 summit provides an enormous opportunity to highlight this issue to world leaders and to showcase the UK’s leadership role in addressing illegal wildlife trade from the 2018 London Conference on the Illegal Wildlife Trade, DEFRA’s IWT challenge fund and the United for Wildlife Transport and Financial Taskforces spearheaded by the Duke of Cambridge and the Royal Foundation.
Alison Hales, Paradise Park Director and Chair of the World Parrot Trust said “We are grateful for the opportunity to tour Paradise Park with George Eustice, discuss the species we work with and present findings and recommendations of our research in conjunction with our international partners.
At the Park we have parrots, toucans, mynah birds all seized by the authorities as they were being transported illegally. We have been pleased to give them a good home but it is sad that some of these were wild birds that should not have been trapped but could not be returned and released.”
More detailed information is available is available on the World Parrot Trust website HERE
- The World Parrot Trust works closely with partner organisations working on online wildlife trade around the world through the Alliance to Counter Crime Online and the Global Initiative on Transnational Organised Crime.
- The multifaceted approach to addressing illegal wildlife trade also involves “boots on the ground” projects and we are grateful for the support of UK government’s DEFRA’s Illegal Wildlife Trade Challenge fund for recently supporting work in Cameroon.
- Paradise Park offers a great opportunity to showcase what Cornwall has to offer the world. A hugely successful family-run attraction that punches far above its weight in driving the global conservation agenda not just for parrots but for all wildlife.