The Pangolin Conservation Guild of Nigeria (PCGN) has rescued three pangolins in Ondo and Ogun States.
The PCGN also known as Pangolin Conservation Working Group of Nigeria, is responsible for protecting and preserving pangolins.
Pangolins are endangered animals that are considered most trafficked in wildlife.
Nigeria has become a major hotspot for the illegal pangolin trade, following massive shipments of pangolin scales being illegally exported from the country.
The PCGN said it rescued two pangolins from Ondo State, and the other one from Abeokuta, Ogun State.
The Chairman of PCGN, Prof Olajumoke Morenikeji in a statement made available to journalists explained that the animals have been rehabilitated and released into a protected forest area.
The statement reads “We are glad and excited to announce our latest rescue and release.
“This time we released three pangolins; a mother and baby pair rescued from a restaurant in Ondo state and Rocky, our active friend from Abeokuta, Ogun state.
“During their stay in our care, you could always see the mother and child wrapped together, and Rocky playing hide and seek with his minders.
“They were all released into a protected forest area where they will be able to roam free and have a great life on the 21st of April, 2021.
“The pangolins we release back into the wild are usually rescued from the illegal wildlife trade, then rehabilitated back to good health before release. Some of these pangolins would have been battered, stressed and wounded going through the bush meat and illegal wildlife trade markets.”
The group also noted that “Illegal wildlife trade is one of the major threats to the loss of biodiversity globally. This coupled with habitat degradation have resulted in the near extinction of all the species of pangolins found in Africa.
“Over the past five years, there have been an increase in the demand for pangolins from the international markets despite the ban in its trade. This has led to an increase in poaching incidents and subsequently, the seizures of pangolin parts.
“The relevant government agencies must step up to the task of protecting the pangolin from extinction before it is too late.
“We can all halt this pangolin’s race to extinction.”