Sellers have been posting pictures of slow lorises online, asking up to HK$13,000 for one of these primates from Southeast Asian countries, which it is illegal to possess in Hong Kong, Apple Daily reported Tuesday.
“Miki”, who claims to be working as a nurse in a veterinary clinic, is one of the advertisers on Facebook.
When contacted by Apple Daily reporters posing as potential buyers, Miki asked for a cash deposit of HK$500 before she would show them a slow loris.
Miki changed the venue several times before picking a park in Tsuen Wan where she met the reporters and showed them a specimen of the endangered species.
She said the slow loris babies were brought in from Thailand and the ones she was selling were already domesticated.
Another online seller was asking HK$11,000 for each slow loris and hinted they are selling fast.
The seller emphasized the animals are from his or her own breeding farm but refused to reveal its location.
Veterinary specialists said buyers face serious risks if they try to keep a slow loris as a pet.
The glands on the limbs of a slow loris could secrete a toxic bodily fluid, and these mammals could also spread the rabies and tuberculosis viruses.
Moreover, a person could face imprisonment for keeping an endangered species as a pet.
Wong Yu-ki, a conservation officer at the Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden Corp., said it is unlikely that these slow lorises were domesticated. Wong said it is highly likely they were captured in the wild.
The Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department said it would follow up these cases.
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