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Critically Endangered Pangolin Returned to the Wild by WFFT

Pangolins are known as the world’s most illegally-trafficked mammal.

We are happy to report that WFFT has helped a critically endangered species of pangolin return to the wild.

The pangolin arrived at WFFT after a local supporter discovered the animal being sold locally after it had been poached from the wild. 

Pangolins generally do not cope well in captivity and can often die quickly from stress or malnutrition, so it was essential that our team moved quickly.

After a check-up by the veterinary team at our wildlife hospital, the pangolin was ready to be released back into the wild. 

Our wildlife experts chose a huge forest in a nearby national park for the release, where the shy animal was gently placed nearby to a termite nest – perfect for a pangolin, as they are insectivores.  


The released animal is believed to be a Sunda pangolin, a species, which is native to Thailand and is listed as Critically Endangered. 

Known as the world’s most illegally-trafficked mammal, pangolins are at risk of being poached to extinction. 

The animals are covered in hard scales, which they use to help protect themselves from predators by curling up into a ball. However, the scales – made from keratin, the same protein that forms human hair and fingernails – are heavily traded in the illegal wildlife trade, where they are sold for use in traditional Chinese and African medicine. 

All eight species of pangolin are protected by CITES, which banned the commercial trade of the animal back in 2017. Yet the illegal trade in this animal still exists, and it’s estimated that at least one pangolin is killed every hour in Asia. 

That makes a rescue and release like this one so important to help protect pangolins in Thailand, and preserve their population for future generations. 

It is only thanks to our generous supporters that we can be there for animals when they need help the most. Please help us to continue our life-saving work by making a donation.

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Our Mission

WFFT is one of South East Asia’s largest animal sanctuaries and cares for over 700 animals. The sanctuary rescues and rehabilitates captive wild animals, and offers a forever home to those who cannot safely be returned to the wild.

The charity also focuses on raising awareness of wildlife conservation and animal exploitation by educating tourists and local communities on the urgent issues facing animals today.

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