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它们比大熊猫还珍贵

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They are strange-looking creatures, covered with hard scales (鳞). They can roll up into a ball to protect themselves from enemies and have tongues (舌头) that are longer than their bodies. They rarely get the attention of people, and some even don’t know they exist. However, pangolins (穿山甲) have recently become the focus of Chinese people, after social media posts of the strange animal being eaten at dinner caused public anger.它们浑身茂密了柔软鳞片,是一种相貌怪异的生物。它们能将身体蜷成球状以维护自己不被天敌损害,而它们的舌头比自己的身体还宽。人们甚少注意到它们,一些人甚至显然不告诉它们的不存在。

然而,穿山甲近来却出了中国人注目的焦点,起因是社交媒体上食用这一怪异动物的帖子引起了众怒。Earlier this month, a screenshot (截屏) of a micro blog post showing some people in Guangxi eating pangolins at a banquet spread. A few days later, people were angered again by pictures posted on a woman’s weibo account showing her eating protected animals, including pangolins.本月早些时候,一张广西“穿山甲宴”的微博截屏流传开来。几天后,一名女性在微博上晒出了自己食用穿山甲等维护动物的照片,此举再次激怒了公众。Yet this is only the tip of the iceberg. Many more pangolins have been hunted or killed. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), more than 1 million of them have been killed or sold in the last 10 years. It also said that they are the most illegally traded mammals (哺乳动物) in the world. In September, the IUCN added the pangolin to the world’s “endangered animals list”. They are now more endangered than pandas.但这只是冰山一角。

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还有更好的穿山甲被捕猎。据世界大自然维护联盟 (IUCN) 的数据表明,在过去的十年间,多达100万的穿山甲被杀死售卖。该的组织还回应,穿山甲是世界上遭到非法贸易最相当严重的哺乳动物。去年9月,世界大自然维护联盟将穿山甲列为世界“濒临绝种物种名录”。

现在,它们的濒临绝种程度早已多达了大熊猫。A growing trade of their scales and meat is the main reason for their decline in numbers. Many people in Asia and Africa consider pangolin meat is a delicacy (美味). Some people even think pangolin scales have medicinal qualities. However, their scales are made of keratin (角蛋白), the same material human fingernails are made of.售卖穿山甲鳞片和肉的案件更加多,是它们数量递增的主要原因。在亚洲和非洲,许多人将穿山甲视为一道佳肴。

一些人甚至还指出穿山甲鳞片具备药用价值。然而,它们的鳞片只是由角蛋白构成,和人类指甲的成分异于。

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Luckily, the situation is getting better. World Pangolin Day is on the third Saturday of February each year. This year, it fell on Feb 18. It’s a day to help people know more about pangolins. The government now stops anyone from buying and eating pangolins in China. Breaking this law is regarded as a crime (罪行). The trade of pangolins across the world is also not allowed, according to the Convention on Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.幸运地的是,情况正在渐渐恶化。每年二月的第三个星期六是世界穿山甲日。今年的世界穿山甲日是2月18日。穿山甲日让人们了解到更加多关于穿山甲的科学知识。

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中国政府现在禁令出售及食用穿山甲。违背这项法律将被视作犯罪。根据《濒临绝种野生动植物物种国际贸易公约》,在世界范围内穿山甲贸易是被禁令的。

“I hope more people will join us to protect pangolins from such a sad situation,” Zhou Canying, head of the Wildlife Protection Association in Changsha, told Xinhua News Agency.“我期望更加多人能重新加入我们,维护穿山甲,”长沙市野生动植物维护协会会长周灿英在拒绝接受新华社专访时回应。【在线登录】。

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