Sun, Sep 09, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Hunting rock monkeys still illegal

POACHING:While the protected species list has been updated, killing any wild animal outside of Aboriginal rituals or for state-approved purposes remains a crime

By Peng Chien-li and Jonathan Chin  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Although Formosan rock monkeys are no longer a protected species, hunting them is still illegal, the Miaoli County Government said on Friday.

The county issued the warning following an alleged poaching incident on Sunday last week.

Earlier in the week, two cousins surnamed Lin (林), who live in Taoyuan and Hualien respectively, went to Miaoli County’s Nanjhuang Township (南庄) to barbecue.

After sighting rock monkeys in the woods, the two allegedly worked together to shoot and kill a monkey with an unlicensed gun. They allegedly then field-dressed the monkey and took it home for meat.

Police said they have referred the case to the Miaoli District Prosecutors’ Office and recommended that they be charged for contravening the Controlling Guns, Ammunition and Knives Act (槍砲彈藥刀械管制條例) and Wildlife Conservation Act (野生動物保育法).

The Council of Agriculture’s Forestry Bureau on June 25 decided to remove Formosan rock macaques and seven other species from its list of protected species, while adding 17 others, but it was not until Thursday that it promulgated the amended conservation species list, the Miaoli County Department of Agriculture said, adding that the amended list would not go into effect until two months after its promulgation.

While the list has not yet become official policy, the Wildlife Conservation Act provides significant protection for wildlife, the department said.

Under the act, killing or hunting wild animals outside of Aboriginal religious rituals or for other state-approved purposes is a crime punishable by a fine of NT$50,000 to NT$250,000.

Hunting or killing an animal on the national protected species list could result in a sentence of more than two months but less than five years in prison, commutable to a fine of NT$100,000 to NT$500,000, according to the act.

Additional reporting by CNA

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