It’s not a surprise to anyone that numerous vertebrate species are being sold at different wildlife markets, but at the moment there is still no comprehensive understanding of how much people are involved in those actions in Laos (Lao PDR), nor what the impact on local wildlife populations really is.
The majority of Laotians live in rural areas and their income largely depends on wildlife. Since wildlife products are used as one of the major food sources, numerous species of terrestrial vertebrates are currently being offered at local markets.
Across the tropical regions, mammals and birds have been vanishing, with recent models estimating up to 83% decline by 2050. Furthermore, wild-caught reptiles have been reported from Southeast Asian wildlife markets for over 20 years, with Laos occupying the position of a very popular source.