Study: In COVID's wake, people in China shift to favoring stricter curbs on wildlife trafficking
Public attitudes in China have shifted substantially to favor stricter regulations on the wildlife trade and a willingness to stop consuming wildlife, researchers reported recently in the Chinese journal Biodiversity Science (生物多样性）. Conservationists in China are optimistic that increased attention on wildlife consumption since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic will boost national efforts to prioritize biodiversity conservation.
The coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, thought to arise from wild bats sold in a meat and produce marketplace, spotlighted the public health risks of China’s rampant and often illegal wildlife trade. “By now, if you enter any cities and even rural areas in China, you can see slogans or pictures that we should keep healthy and not eat wildlife,” said environmental scientist Xiangying Shi of Peking University and executive director of Shan Shui Conservation Center, lead author of the study.