In recent decades, the world has undergone dramatic changes. Climate change and a rapidly growing population, leading to increased demand for habitable land and consumer goods, are putting immense pressure on ecosystems and natural resources. As a result of this, wildlife habitats are shrinking. Rainforests, for example, give way to palm plantations for the production of palm oil. The scarcity of habitats also leads to an increase in conflicts between wildlife and humans, especially in rural areas.
At the same time, the demand and thus the market for wildlife and wildlife products is growing. Business with exotic animals for the pet market is flourishing, but parts of wild animals and products made from them - such as reptile leather, tiger and lion bones, ivory, or pangolin scales - are also in demand. For certain species, veritable breeding industries have developed, while other animals are taken from the wild. As wild catches can threaten entire animal populations or even the existence of a species and therefore the diversity of species, international conventions, such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), aim to prevent this by regulating the trade in endangered species.
In addition to the concerns regarding the conservation of species, the topic is also of considerable relevance to animal welfare. Both in the context of breeding as well as when taking animals from the wild, the handling of the animals - for example in regard to housing, keeping, transport, or slaughter - very often takes place under conditions that can in no way be described as compliant with animal welfare. In many countries, national regulations for the protection of individual animals do not exist, and there are only a few international conventions on animal welfare, of which many are mainly applicable to domesticated animals, however. The protection of wild animals therefore proves to be urgently necessary on a national and international level.
The following index provides an overview of the topics in wildlife protection TIR is focused on and highlights fundamental problems relevant to animal and species protection. The index is continuously supplemented and updated.