In China, small key chains filled with actual, real-live animals and fish are being sold on street corners, and people are…well, you can imagine. Salamanders, small fish, and turtles end up being vacuum sealed into small plastic pouches with no way to escape. Vendors claim that the animals are placed in a “nutrient-rich” bit of water and that there is “crystallized oxygen” inside for the animals to live off of. But sadly, that isn’t the case.In the same way that a human would not survive in conditions like these, neither do the small animals.
Lack of food and diminishing oxygen concentrations within both the water and the small amount of air in these plastic pouches will cause the animals to die in a relatively short period of time after the pouches are sealed.” David Neale, animal welfare director of Animals Asia said about the horrific trend.
Just take a look at the poor things being sold on the street:
To be fair, the vendor also advised freeing the animals after “a few days” so that they wouldn’t suffocate once their “oxygen crystals” ran out…but didn’t mention the other dangers that come with handling wild animals. The soft-shelled turtles are often found to carry salmonella bacteria that is easily transferred from its body to a human and can cause serious illness.
The news highlighted China’s lack of animal protection laws and spurred people into signing petitions to change them, but so far, not much is being done about the tiny death-trap souvenirs being sold for $1.50 on the side of the road.
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