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Thailand, 86 tigers dead after confiscation in a famous temple



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Dozens of tigers died after being confiscated in a Thai temple, which used them as a tourist attraction, for repeated allegations of ill-treatment. Of the 147 cats caught by the Thai authorities in the Wat Pha Luang Ta Bua temple in Kanchanaburi, west of the country, 86 are those who did not make it, probably due to a genetic anomaly related to inbreeding. The tigers were brought to two parks in the neighboring province of Ratchaburi.

"It is possible that deaths are due to inbreeding, genetic abnormalities have been identified that affect the body and the immune system," said Pattarapol Maneeon, a manager of the National Park of Thailand. Many suffered from tongue paralysis, respiratory problems and loss of appetite, which was fatal. Many of them "were already in a state of stress after being transported and changing their habitat, later on there were health problems," said another official, Sunthorn Chaiwattana.

However, some animal defenders have done so, doubting the quality of the supply of the tigers by their capture by the authorities. "Honestly, who has the ability to feed so many tigers at the same time?" has denounced Edwin Wiek, founder of the NGO "Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand".

Too small cages that promote the spread of disease "do not match what was necessary for so many tigers," he complained. Thailand attracts tens of millions of visitors every year and wildlife tourism is a great success, often at the expense of animal welfare. Tourists can ride elephants, play with macaques or take selfies with tigers. Sometimes these animals are chained, neglected and forced to perform.

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