29 March 2011

Über-cute slow loris video masks a grimmer reality

From an article at The Independent:
A video of [a slow loris] being tickled has gained more than six million views. A new clip, posted this month, in which a loris clutches a cocktail umbrella, has been viewed two million times...

Poachers steal infant lorises from their parents in the wild to sell at open-air markets in Indonesia, where they are traded for as little as £10. The export market is most lucrative in Japan, where lorises stolen to order sell for £3,500. The trade is now expanding into the US and Europe...

But many do not survive the journey. "The only reason the loris isn't biting the person holding it in the video is because it has had its teeth ripped out with pliers," said Chris Shepherd of Traffic Southeast Asia, which campaigns against the trade in primates.

The teeth are removed because the loris, listed as vulnerable to extinction by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, can deliver a toxic bite. Mr Shepherd said: "The creature is then effectively doomed because of infection. Most don't last very long after that."..

The loris is a nocturnal animal and is effectively being blinded by the daylight in the videos. Disoriented, it grasps at the umbrella believing it is the bamboo of its natural terrain.
A hat tip to Cory Doctorow for the BoingBoing via.


  1. Poor animals.. Sorry missed a vital word in there!

  2. I deleted the one with the typo. :.)

  3. Enraging and repulsive. What is wrong with people??

  4. My cousins...so horribly sad. And they're so unbelievably cute (much cuter than I am). How can anybody do that kind of thing to an innocent creature?

    --Swift Loris

  5. Swift, I was thinking of you when I wrote the post. Hope it didn't upset you too much...


  6. How sad the way some humans treat the other creatures on this planet.

  7. "Sad" doesn't begin to describe this behavior. A crime is when one person commits an immoral act upon another person. Exploiting animals who can't defend themselves or ever hope to have a chance against man is repulsive. I'm not at all religious, but the word that comes to mind is "sin." What good are we if derive joy from exploiting a living creature that has no recourse but to submit? I feel great shame and rage.

  8. Let's call chuck loris ! Sorry...

  9. For some reason, I keep going back to how this is happening and why does it happen in the first place. I know this is a little off-topic but I found some articles on illegal logging in Indonesia as well as illegal gold mining in that area as well, and I wonder if it does has some siginfigant corelation with the slow loris pet trade.

    Considering this, I decided to look with the wiki page on slow loris conservation. From what I'm reading, the slow loris is like a capuchin monkey; cute but horrible little biters. I read the article this is linked to and from what I can read there, apparently there was someone commenting who lives where those critters are common and notes that the locals would not consider having one as a pet because they're apparently quite vicious when cornered.

    Noting that I just mentioned capuchin monkeys, I have to relate the teeth pulling of lorises to what many "monkey babies" have to also go through. I was watching a documentary on Nat Geo in which a woman, who apparently is an "expert" in this told the camera that it is mandatory to pull the teeth of the monkey so they don't bite. It's unbelievably shocking when you hear that and then see it happening to these adorable lorises, although the monkeys are probably anthesied first before the procedure, many vets will not proform it.

    Sorry for the off-topicness, but it was starting to remind me of that.


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