Search dogs to help put dent in illegal wildlife trade

Specially trained wildlife detector dogs, named Viper, Butter, Lancer and Locket, have just completed training alongside handlers and will soon begin working at important U.S. import sites including UPS’ global air hub in Louisville, Ky. Other cities where the dogs will conduct searches include Miami, Los Angeles and Chicago. The program is an effort to address the increasing trade in body parts of protected species. San Jose Mercury News (Calif.) (free registration)/The Associated Press (4/9)

 LOUISVILLE, Ky.—The U.S. government wants to try to do something about a growing trade in items such as elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn and is enlisting the help of another animal to accomplish that.

The first class of wildlife detector dogs and their handlers have finished training to search for protected species and will soon be stationed at key ports of entry around the country, including Louisville, Miami, Los Angeles and Chicago. The four retrievers are Viper, Butter, Lancer and Locket.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service official Ed Grace says some species are being dangerously threatened by rapid growth in global trade.

Louisville is among the locations being targeted because the city is home to UPS’ worldwide air hub. Fish and Wildlife says the dogs may visit facilities elsewhere as well.

Leave a Reply