PICTURES: Tigers Butchered for Trade at "Zoos" in China?

PICTURES: Tigers Butchered for Trade at ''Zoos'' in China?
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The Xiongsen Bear and Tiger Park in Guillin, China, puts on a circus-style performance in an undated photograph. Some of the park's 1,300 tigers and 400 bears perform in the daily shows.

The park is lobbying to ease regulations on China's 16-year-old ban in trading tiger parts--which would be to their benefit. Xiongsen owns a nearby distillery that produces tiger-bone wine, called the chicken soup of Chinese medicine, according to National Geographic magazine.

(See tiger pictures.)

But conservationists fear that any form of legal tiger trade would further endanger the fewer than 4,000 tigers that still roam free, the magazine reported. For instance, just as legalizing ivory sales has not helped to slow illegal poaching of elephants, legalizing tiger products may only increase demand for tiger parts--both wild and farmed, conservationists say.
—Photograph by Mark Leong
 
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