Man Hunts Down and Cooks Endangered Bird to Fight Mom's Cancer

Written by Henrik Rothen

Mar.18 - 2024 10:26 AM CET

The rare 'Crested Ibises' Photo: Private
The rare 'Crested Ibises' Photo: Private
In a desperate attempt to cure his mother's cancer, a Chinese man chose to kill the last surviving bird in the region.

Trending Now

In a startling incident that has garnered widespread attention, bird watchers in Jiangxi's Wuyuan County(China) reported that a man had killed a Crested Ibis, a species under national first-class protection in China. This event, which took place late last year, has been confirmed by several local departments, with police intervention already underway. This is reported by

Bird enthusiasts raised alarms on March 17th, revealing that the man from Jiangwan Town, Zankeng Village, had killed the area's only Crested Ibis. According to the bird photography blogger "Euroasianbirder," the incident occurred in November 2023, with the man allegedly hunting the rare bird to prepare soup for his mother's cancer treatment.

Following these claims, the blogger's post on the social media platform Xiao Hong Shu was deleted.

The Zhejiang Qianjiangyuan National Park Authority confirmed in March 2023 that two Crested Ibises, part of a population restoration project and released into the wild, had migrated to Zankeng Village in Wuyuan. Local authorities took immediate action, employing dedicated forest rangers for around-the-clock monitoring and conducting thorough inspections of bird-catching nets throughout the town. They also restricted access to the ibis habitat area and conducted awareness campaigns on the importance of protecting this species among local villagers.

The presence of the Crested Ibises attracted bird watchers nationwide. However, it was disclosed that one of the two ibises had previously fallen prey to a raptor, leaving only one bird, which was then hunted by a local man.

Officials from Zankeng Village confirmed the incident took place last year. "The purpose of the hunting is unclear; it wasn't for consumption. It was an accidental catch, not by a local but by someone from another village, who is now in the custody of the county police," a village committee worker said.

Following this, staff from the Jiangxi Wuyuan National Nature Reserve for Forest Birds stated that the specifics of the case were not entirely clear but confirmed it had escalated to a criminal case, with the police department involved and an official announcement pending.

The Crested Ibis, known as the "Panda of Birds," is an endangered species unique to East Asia. In 1981, only seven wild Crested Ibises were discovered in Yang County, Shaanxi Province. Thanks to relentless efforts by scientists to breed the species artificially, the population has now exceeded 9,000, marking a miraculous resurgence from near extinction. The Crested Ibis is also among 15 endangered species prioritized for rewilding during China's "Fourteenth Five-Year Plan" period and had been listed by the IUCN as critically endangered.

In June 2016, two individuals were sentenced to ten and eight years in prison, respectively, for illegally hunting and killing a valuable and endangered wild animal after they killed a Crested Ibis in Yaoqu Village, Yaowang Town, Yaozhou District, Tongchuan City, using a slingshot.