JAKARTA, June 17 (UPI) -- Orangutans and gibbons are still traded and kept as pets in Java and Bali, despite having been legally protected in Indonesia since 1931, a report said.
TRAFFIC, the wildlife trade monitoring network, analyzed data from 1994-2003 on information collected from 35 wildlife markets in 22 cities across the two islands, according to the World Wildlife Federation.
TRAFFIC investigators found a total of 559 orangutans and gibbons during the surveys, many on sale or being illegally traded in "bird markets." However, the actual numbers of animals sold from the markets, however, are largely unknown, according to TRAFFIC.
"Better monitoring of wildlife markets would enable more accurate analysis of the trade in primates as well as other wildlife species that continue to be sold in these markets," said James Compton, director of TRAFFIC Southeast Asia. "This would definitely help increase the efficiency of law enforcement."