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We must understand the culture of wildlife consumption to stop future pandemics

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We must understand the culture of wildlife consumption to stop future pandemics

Inspire is delighted to have teamed up with Expat Life magazine to bring you more great content to do with Thailand

As I learned while living in rural Lao PDR, trade in and consumption of wildlife is usually based on necessity or belief. So strict controls alone won’t work – measures must take account of culture, behaviour and awareness.

Is wildlife consumption to blame for COVID-19? The consumption of wild animals is nothing new, and very common in Asia. Most researchers pin the origin of the virus on animal-to-human transmission from a wild animal (a bat is the usual suspect) to humans.

To stop the wildlife-to-human transmission of unknown diseases, we first need to understand some of the cultural factors to which wildlife consumption and trade are intricately connected. If we haven’t learned from the initial SARS episode and from the Avian Influenza epidemic, now is the time to pay attention to wildlife consumption and make changes to avoid future loss of life.

Wildlife as a staple part of diets

While researching for my PhD in Lao PDR, I lived in a remote rural community where wildlife was the primary source of protein. During the dry season, especially, when farming was slow and forests were more accessible, men went on hunting trips for game, including bamboo rats, red squirrels, deer, boar, reptiles, monkeys and – yes – bats.

The local people took their food from the immediate environment. The community numbered around 700 residents, yet it extracted 61 tons of wild animal and plant biomass annually from the accessible forest surrounding the village. Wildlife was necessary protein and, together with forest vegetables, completed the people’s daily dietary needs.

Even if wildlife consumption in communities may decrease over time, we can also expect an increased commercialization of wildlife by poor rural people seeking alternative sources of income.

While we found rare and critically endangered species in many wet markets in Lao PDR, for the most part and in much larger quantities, we found lower value wildlife, such as squirrels, rats, snakes, birds, and bats. These food items were not the highly sought-after top-tier rarities, but they were sold in large quantities and they were definitely not checked by the local food safety department.

Wildlife as traded goods

In Lao PDR, over 50 000 hectares of primary forest are lost annually due to deforestation, consequently destroying wildlife habitat. Decreased access to wildlife as food might prompt some communities to subsist on farm animals as their main source of protein, but will this stop them from hunting wildlife altogether? Maybe not.

Apart from wildlife consumption, certain species – especially those associated with power, prowess, libido, or deemed to have medicinal value – are sold for a hefty price. The IUCN’s Red List of Threatened Species notes that 45 out of the 215 mammal species identified as endemic in Lao PDR are threatened.

Local wet markets in remote locations of Lao PDR displayed a stunning array of wild animals: red junglefowl (the domestic chicken’s primary progenitor, and now threatened because of hybridization with it), the Laotian rock rat (endangered), various locally unique subspecies of wild boar, sambar deer (vulnerable), mouse-deer (endangered), the Laotian giant flying squirrel (critically endangered), the Asiatic softshell turtle (vulnerable), and the Mekong giant catfish (critically endangered). Rare wildlife was ready to be sold to local consumers who believe these animals hold spiritual and curative powers.

Rare wildlife species become more valuable just before they are completely eradicated. In 2018, the president of Thailand’s largest construction company got caught poaching in a national wildlife sanctuary. Among the several carcasses in his possession was a black panther, an ultra-rare leopard species. According to a news report, the black panther is associated with “sexual virility”, hence the prize kill. Sadly, the man, among the 40 richest in Thailand at the time, was acquitted of killing the animal. (He was, however, handed two related sentences for poaching intent, weapons charges, and bribery.)

While this case is hopefully not the norm, the bulk consumption of less valuable wildlife is likely more threatening in terms of potential outbreaks of diseases. It does, however, show that biodiversity is threatened at all levels, both among high-value prize animals as well as bulk extraction of largely unchecked game.

Read more at https://expatlifeinthailand.com/health-and-beauty/we-must-understand-the-culture-of-wildlife-consumption-to-stop-future-pandemics/

Source: Expat Life Thailand

Inspire is delighted to have teamed up with Expat Life magazine to bring you more great content to do with Thailand

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Nina has worked for Inspire and Choice Group Asia since 2011 and loves to party when she can!

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september, 2020

01sep10:0031oct(oct 31)20:00Beer Fest at Terrace 90 Garden RestaurantGet out your lederhosen and beer steins.

01sep10:0030(sep 30)21:00Energy Booster at Quan Spa, Hua Hin Marriott Resort & SpaRevitalize your body with this invigorating treatment.

01sep17:0030(sep 30)00:00Dine in the Sky & Stay for Free at Vana Nava Sky, Holiday Inn Vana Nava Hua Hin𝐒𝐩𝐞𝐧𝐝 𝐚 𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐢𝐦𝐮𝐦 𝐨𝐟 𝐓𝐇𝐁 4,𝟗𝟗𝟗 𝐨𝐧 𝐨𝐧𝐞 𝐛𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐠𝐞𝐭 #𝐅𝐑𝐄𝐄* 𝐢𝐧 𝐚 𝐬𝐭𝐲𝐥𝐢𝐬𝐡 𝐫𝐨𝐨𝐦 𝐨𝐟 𝐇𝐨𝐥𝐢𝐝𝐚𝐲 𝐈𝐧𝐧 𝐕𝐚𝐧𝐚 𝐍𝐚𝐯𝐚 𝐇𝐮𝐚 𝐇𝐢𝐧

01sep19:3022:30Trivia night at Sage Bar & Guest House Hua Hin 102Please join us with our lovely hostess Wendy Herbert as we again test our minds.

02sep20:0023:00The Bangkok Beatles are coming Back to Hua HinThe legends they are return to our stage to start a weekly show, its a long trip down for the lads and with town as quiet as it is

03sep(sep 3)17:0004(sep 4)00:00The Gin Club at EAST RooftopBuy 2 Gin get 1 free tapas of the day

03sep20:0021:30Ted’s Quiz Night every ThursdayJoin us every Thursday night in Ted’s from 7pm with quiz master Lee Shamrock

04sep(sep 4)11:3007(sep 7)14:30All You Can Eat Dim Sum at Hilton Hua Hin Resort and SpaSpecial! Our 𝐀𝐥𝐥-𝐘𝐨𝐮-𝐂𝐚𝐧-𝐄𝐚𝐭 𝐃𝐢𝐦 𝐒𝐮𝐦 lunch offer will be available 4 days in a role during this upcoming long weekend

04sep17:0018:00Yoga on the beach at 19Rai Queen ParkThis FREE Class will introduce basic yoga and breath work.

04sep18:0022:00Food Stall-Market and BBQ on the beach at InterContinental Hua Hin ResortOur BBQ feast on the beach returns – and this time with a service twist.

04sep18:0022:30Rim Lay Market at Hua Hin 19 RaiWe invite you to try various kinds of local food.

04sep(sep 4)19:0005(sep 5)00:00Songkran Holiday #2 at EAST RooftopExperience Latino Vibes and be ready to dance with 𝗗𝗝 𝗣𝗹𝗼𝘆 from Bangkok

05sep12:0016:00Painting On Straw Bags at Baanstraw ThailandWe are welcoming you, to visit our studio of straw crafts, and have the ability to express your creativity through painting on our straw bags!

05sep18:0022:00Fisherman Village Seafood Market at Holiday Inn Resort Vana Nava Hua HinEnjoy a sumptuous selection of dishes and a splendid buffet highlighting Seafood, BBQ meats and much more

05sep18:0022:00Saturday Night Seafood Delight at Azure Restaurant & Bar, InterContinental Hua Hin ResortEnjoy a special menu featuring free-flow appetisers, sharing plate for the whole table along with choice of main course and dessert.

05sep18:0023:00Speakeasy at Ssshhh Cafe BarA Speakeasy with Live Music from Local Musicians.

05sep18:3022:00The pirate night seafood beach BBQ buffet at Hilton Hua Hin Resort and SpaEnjoy flavorful seafood BBQ buffet with spectacular fire shows right on Hua Hin Beach.

05sep18:3021:30Seafood BBQ Buffet at Anantasila Villa by the sea Hua HinEnjoy a wide selection of fresh local seafood and Thai dish while taking in the spectacular view of the sea.

06sep15:3021:00Sunday Sunset Cruise at Siam Sea-Cret CruisesThere is nothing better than relaxing and seeing the sunset on board a Sea-Cret Cruise boat off the coastline of Hua Hin.

06sep18:0022:00Food Stall-Market and BBQ on the beach at InterContinental Hua Hin ResortOur BBQ feast on the beach returns – and this time with a service twist.

06sep19:0022:00Delicious wines from the foot of the boot with Italian dinner at The Villas Hua Hin ThailandDELICIOUS WINES FROM THE FOOT OF THE BOOT WITH ITALIAN DINNER

10sep20:0021:30Ted’s Quiz Night every ThursdayJoin us this coming Thursday night in Ted’s from 7pm as quiz master Lee Shamrock takes to the stage to conduct his first ever Quiz night for the good folk of Hua Hin.

11sep(sep 11)10:0013(sep 13)17:00Bluroc Huahin Exculsive DayReserve a seat for a visit to a condo for residence and investment with one of the most beautiful condos in Hua Hin.

11sep(sep 11)19:0012(sep 12)01:00One Championship, Pongsiri V Sean Clancy at Father TedsJoin us this coming evening in Father Teds as Thailands very own Pongsiri and Irish sensation Sean Clancy battle it out in the One Championship from the Impact Arena in Bangkok.

11sep20:0023:00Sunisa Pett & Bluesman Tor Every Friday in Ted’sFriday means Lads night in Ted’s, Lads can enjoy half priced Currys from 8pm till our Kitchen closes at 11pm.

12sep(sep 12)11:3013(sep 13)14:30Dim Sum All-You-Can-Eat at Hilton Hua Hin Resort and SpaDim Sum delicacies with a beautiful sea view at White Lotus Restaurant for THB 580 nett per person from 11:30 am – 2:30 pm.

12sep18:0023:20Speakeasy at Ssshhh Cafe BarA Speakeasy with Live Music from Local Musicians.

12sep18:0022:00Fisherman Village Seafood Market at Holiday Inn Resort Vana Nava Hua HinEnjoy a sumptuous selection of dishes and a splendid buffet highlighting Seafood, BBQ meats and much more

12sep(sep 12)21:0013(sep 13)00:00Meet me on the roof at EAST RooftopThis Saturday experience 𝗛𝗼𝘂𝘀𝗲 & 𝗣𝘂𝗺𝗽𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗗𝗶𝘀𝗰𝗼 vibes with 𝗗𝗝 𝗝𝗘𝗥𝗢𝗠𝗘 𝗚. 15% discount on cold cuts, cheese and wine selection.

12sep21:3023:55Suger and Spice, Saturday nights in Father Ted’sEnjoy this award winning duo live in Father Ted’s each and every Saturday with their fantastic renditions of Soul, Funk and Disco classics from the 70’s and 80’s.

13sep13:3014:30Family Pool Party at The Villas Resort Hua HinEvery Sunday at 13.30 at the Villas Hua Hin we are waiting for children and their parents for the most active party in the pool!

18sep18:3022:00Friday in the Mix at Azure Restaurant, InterContinental Hua Hin ResortPresenting a delectable seafood dinner combining à la carte selections including main, sharing and dessert courses with free-flow appetisers.

19sep16:0022:00EPIC Pool Party at Shoreline Beach Club, Hua HinJoin us for the first edition of EPIC Pool Party at the beautiful Shoreline Beach Club, situated at the beachfront of the prestigious Amari Hua Hin.

19sep18:0023:00Speakeasy at Ssshhh Cafe BarA Speakeasy with Live Music from Local Musicians.

19sep18:0022:00Fisherman Village Seafood Market at Holiday Inn Resort Vana Nava Hua HinEnjoy a sumptuous selection of dishes and a splendid buffet highlighting Seafood, BBQ meats and much more plus a great kids’ selection for our Little Big Travellers who eat free when accompanied by a paying adult.

19sep18:3022:00Seafood BBQ Night at Avani+ Hua Hin ResortEnjoy beautiful Saturday evenings at our beach front restaurant Brezza, as chef BBQ’s your choice of meats and seafood to perfection, while Dj Jerome G and our Live Band set the mood.

19sep18:3022:30Taste of Thailand: A la carte Journey through the 4 regions at InterContinental Hua Hin ResortJoin us for an evening of exquisite cuisine under the direction of Chef Mama Duu.

20sep11:3014:30Infinity À La Carte Brunch at Vana Nava SkySpoil yourself this Sunday with an elegant and indulgent Infinity à la carte Brunch at our stunning rooftop restaurant and bar, Vana Nava Sky

20sep13:3014:30Family Pool Party at The Villas Resort Hua HinEvery Sunday at 13.30 at the Villas Hua Hin we are waiting for children and their parents for the most active party in the pool!

20sep16:0017:00Clean Up SundaySee you 4pm at the beach in soi Hua Hin 85 (Look for red pig sign) . Please wear mask and bring your own gloves.

20sep17:0023:59EPIC at EAST Rooftop Bar l Hua HinFor the first time ever we bring a top-notch line up of international & local DJs to Hua Hin!

23sep(sep 23)17:3024(sep 24)00:30Lavish Ladies Night at Vana Nava SkyGrab your girls and head to the sky because Wednesday nights just got a whole lot hotter in the sky! Buy 1 get 1 free on our special ladies menu all night till close!

23sep19:0021:30Rock and Soul Charity Bingo night at Father Ted’sJoin us on Wednesday the 23rd of this Month as we try and generate some much needed funds to help a few local charities that are badly in the need of help right now.

25sep18:0022:00Sushi Night at EAST Rooftop Bar Hua HinEnjoy sushis, sashimis and makis

25sep18:3022:00Friday in the Mix at Azure Restaurant, InterContinental Hua Hin ResortPresenting a delectable seafood dinner combining à la carte selections including main, sharing and dessert courses with free-flow appetisers.

25sep20:0023:55Sunisa Pett & Bluesman Tor at Father Ted’sFriday means Lads night in Ted’s, Lads can enjoy half priced Currys from 8pm till our Kitchen closes at 11pm.

26sep09:0016:00The Amarinda Cup at True Arena Hua HinThe event will see around 40 adult players (both men and women) competing, but there will also be kids playing in an opening game.

26sep(sep 26)11:3027(sep 27)14:30Dim Sum All-You-Can-Eat at Hilton Hua Hin Resort and SpaDim Sum delicacies with a beautiful sea view at White Lotus Restaurant for THB 580 nett per person from 11:30 am – 2:30 pm.

26sep18:0022:00Fisherman Village Seafood Market at Holiday Inn Resort Vana Nava Hua HinEnjoy a sumptuous selection of dishes and a splendid buffet highlighting Seafood, BBQ meats and much more

26sep18:3022:30Taste of Thailand: A la carte Journey through the 4 regions at InterContinental Hua Hin ResortJoin us for an evening of exquisite cuisine under the direction of Chef Mama Duu.

26sep21:3023:55Suger and Spice, Saturday nights in Father Ted’sEnjoy this award winning duo live in Father Ted’s each and every Saturday with their fantastic renditions of Soul, Funk and Disco classics from the 70’s and 80’s.

27sep11:3014:30Infinity À La Carte Brunch at Vana Nava SkyEnjoy the live DJ vibe and begin with our 3-tier tower of Fresh Seafood, Charcuterie Cold Cuts and fine International Cheeses

27sep12:0015:00Sunday Carvery at Hua Hin Marriott Resort & SpaEnjoy fresh selection of fresh salads, appetizers, followed by quality roasted meats and all the trimmings.

27sep13:0016:00Ted’s Traditional Sunday RoastEnjoy a Traditional Sunday Roast each and every Sunday from 1pm for as little 295tb

30sep19:0021:00Wine Me Up: 24K at Avani+ Hua Hin ResortPut on your best Glitter & Gold Dress and dance the night away with the tunes of Dj Jerome G

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