End Potential Capture and Smuggling of Wild Birds That Cripples Ecosystems

Target: Edy Rahmayadi, Governor of North Sumatra, Indonesia

Goal: Investigate smuggling of birds potentially caught in the wild.

Forty thousand songbirds have been discovered in smuggling operations run through Indonesia’s Kualanamu Airport, quantities which are almost certainly made up through the illegal capture of wild birds rather than licensed breeding. The birds are mostly shipped to the island of Java, where keeping them is a popular hobby, with inhabitants willing to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars each year for the animals. Javanese bird collectors are known to pay far more for wild birds than captive-bred ones in the belief that they’re better singers, the quality for which they’re most prized.

However, the heavy trade of birds has been subjected to legal restrictions due to the damage done to ecosystems in North Sumatra, the birds’ native habitat. Without them, insect populations can skyrocket, paving the way for significant damage to vegetation and leaving predators without a crucial food source.

Wildlife experts say that the number of smuggled birds would be impossible to breed legally without regulators noticing, leading to the conclusion that the birds are captured and sold in violation of the law, likely with the help of bribed airport officials. This destructive trade will disrupt food chains and enrich those who’ve violated crucial laws. Sign the petition below to demand that it be investigated and the perpetrators brought to justice.


Dear Governor Edy,

The smuggling of songbirds to Java is almost certainly illegal, as the numbers involved could not have been bred in captivity. The premium placed on wild birds by collectors is a likely motivation for smugglers to trap them in violation of Indonesian law, threatening the stability of the very ecosystems these laws were enacted to protect.

I urge you to initiate an investigation into potential criminal activity at Kualanamu Airport, and if wrongdoing is discovered, to bring both the smugglers and any accomplices to justice.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Lip Kee Yap


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