Have you ever heard about pangolin? What is it actually? It is a unique creature. In Indonesia, the local name is trenggiling. The animal has a unique characteristic, which is its armored shell. It will hide under its shell when feel threatened. Due to its uniqueness and value, more people start hunting this animal illegally. Here is the fact. It becomes the most traded animal in the world. Most of the bad people trade it in a black market. More hunters look for this cute animal.
The Uniqueness of Pangolin
Pangolin is also famous due to their diversity in species. Approximately, there are about 8 species. The 4 species live in Asia. They are Sunda, Palawan, Chinese, and Indian pangolin. The rest species live in Africa. These include long-tailed, cape, giant, and tree pangolin. Apart from the diversity, this animal has much uniqueness. For instance, their tongue can be longer than their body. Do you believe it? It can even be more than 40 cm long when extended. They use their tongue to hunt foods.
The most valuable part of the pangolin is its scales. In fact, this is the only mammals that come with scales. Their scales have the similar substance of your fingernails, talons, and rhino horns. Since these are quite hard, the animal depends on their scales against predators or threats. Many people hunt it for the scales. They use the scales as traditional medicine. They will dry and roast them for health purposes. Today, you need to spend more than $2,500 for a kilogram of pangolin scales. It is only available on the black market.
Pangolin is definitely a unique animal. Unfortunately, it faces a significant threat against an illegal hunting. Despite this issue, more people want to learn about this animal. The wonder what the meaning of the name is. Actually, it is something that rolls. In Indonesia, it is called trenggiling. The meaning is a creature that “menggiling” or rolls up. Since it is the act of defense, they become immobile when threatened. Therefore, the hunters can easily catch them. It is a bad move when someone tries to hunt them.
Pangolin has Amazing Defense Mechanisms
Trenggiling is able to dig holes and climb trees. Thanks to their big claws. In fact, they can overhang the branches easily. Not to mention they are able to dig through numerous surfaces easily. The rolling up mechanism is actually a good defense. Even big cats like lions can do no harm to this creature. The scales are quite hard and these protect pangolin from bites and claws. The problem is the human. They only need to carry catch and collect it without hassles.
No one knows how long pangolin is able to live. Apart from illegal hunting, the animal also has other threats like malnutrition, depression, stress, and much more. There is another defense mechanism. The animal produces a noxious acid. At least, it can keep the predators away. Not to mention they are able to hurt enemies using their sharp tale. Once again, the problem is the human. These mechanisms are likely useless against the human. Don’t you think so?