WCS 3-Sentence Science

Latest Pangolin Trafficking Hotspot: South Sudan

Wildlife Conservation Society
2 min readSep 6, 2019

August 8, 2019


Each year, Wildlife Conservation Society scientists publish more than 300 peer-reviewed studies and papers. “WCS 3-Sentence Science” is a regular tip-sheet — in bite sized helpings — of some of this published work.

Here we present work by WCS’s Africa Program on the trafficking of pangolins in South Sudan.

  1. The 2013–2018 conflict in South Sudan, and resulting insecurity, inaccessibility and political instability, has severely impacted the enforcement and monitoring capabilities and efforts of the South Sudan National Wildlife Service and other law enforcement agencies to monitor the trafficking of pangolins.
  2. Though researchers do not do not know the exact trade routes through South Sudan, it is reasonable to assume that pangolin products are also trafficked by road across the borders with Uganda, DRC, Ethiopia and other neighbouring countries due to limited and, at certain locations, nonexistent border control.
  3. Given the evidence we present, and the current situation in South Sudan, it is likely that volumes of pangolin trafficking in South Sudan are higher than presented in the study, which warrants monitoring of both the current state of trafficking and pangolin populations, and that enforcement agencies, technical partners and funding partners work together on concerted efforts to monitor and address wildlife trafficking in South Sudan.

Study and Journal: “First records of pangolin trafficking in South Sudan” from African Journal of Ecology
WCS Co-Author(s): P.P. Awol, WCS Africa Program

For more information, contact: Stephen Sautner, 718–220–3682, ssautner@wcs.org.

Wildlife Conservation Society

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