New haul of exotic animals seized in Philippines
MANILA (AFP) - Wildlife authorities said on Tuesday they had seized nearly 100 exotic animals that had been smuggled into the southern Philippines in the second such haul in just two weeks.
Among the creatures confiscated were 66 wild birds, including a rare Pesquet's parrot, as well as assorted reptiles and mammals such as a long-beaked echidna, a Malayan box turtle, and 10 sugar gliders - squirrel-like animals that can glide from tree to tree.
A total of 93 animals from Indonesia and Australia were seized by maritime police in the waters off the southern island of Mindanao on Saturday, including vulnerable and critically endangered species, said Mr Ali Hadjinasser, the regional chief of the government wildlife board.
Five Filipinos who were transporting the animals were arrested and will be charged with illegal possession and transport of those species, he told AFP.