Indonesia urged to take stern action on illegal bird trade

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — A wildlife trade monitoring group has called on Indonesia to take strong action against traders of endangered birds who are driving several species toward extinction.

Traffic, a U.K.-based group, said Thursday that its latest survey recorded nearly 23,000 birds in five markets in three cities in eastern and central Java.

Serene Chng, a spokeswoman for the group, said the scale of the illegal trade is “staggering” and makes the outlook for some of Indonesia’s bird species very bleak.

The research was carried out in Surabaya, Yogyakarta and Malang. The capital Jakarta is already known as a hotspot for the illegal bird trade.

Indonesia is home to more than 130 threatened bird species, more than any other country except Brazil, according to Traffic.