Our directory of things of interest

University Directory

Cashmere trade threatening biodiversity

  • Written by  Harley Rustad
  • Published in Wildlife
Cashmere trade threatening biodiversity Shutterstock
01 Sep
2013
A new study published in Conservation Biology has linked the cashmere garment trade to the destruction of ecosystems that support numerous endangered species

Ninety per cent of the world’s cashmere comes from Mongolia and China. As pastoralists attempt to increase their profits by expanding their goat herds, species such as the Bactrian camel, saiga, wild yak and snow leopard are being squeezed out of their natural habitats.

Researchers from the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the Snow Leopard Trust examined herder profits, changes in goat herd numbers and wild species populations. They found that many already endangered species were being placed under further pressure through displacement from primary food sources, predation by the herders’ dogs and retaliatory killing of snow leopards by herders.

‘The consequences are dramatic and negative for iconic species that governments have signed legislation to protect, yet the wildlife is continually being squeezed into a no-win situation,’ said lead author Joel Berger of the WCS and the University of Montana. ‘Herders are doing what we would do – just trying to improve their livelihoods, and who can blame them?’

This story was published in the September 2013 edition of Geographical Magazine

Related items

Subscribe and Save!

geo line break v3

Free eBooks - Geographical Newsletter

Sign up for our weekly newsletter today and get a FREE eBook collection!

geo line break v3

University of Winchester

geo line break v3

EDUCATION PARTNERS

Aberystwyth University University of Greenwich The University of Derby

TRAVEL PARTNERS

Ponant

Silversea

Travel the Unknown

NEVER MISS A STORY - Follow Geographical on Social

Want to stay up to date with breaking Geographical stories? Join the thousands following us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and stay informed about the world.

More articles in NATURE...

Wildlife

A look at the contribution of hippos to the savannah…

Wildlife

The new app encourages young children to connect with the…

Energy

A type of panel has been invented that can generate…

Tectonics

In the 4th century BC, Aristotle proposed that earthquakes were…

Climate

The Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management pledges to achieve net…

Tectonics

Earthquakes from time immemorial have attracted the attention of the…

Tectonics

A planned kayaking expedition in Nepal took on a whole…

Tectonics

Scientists from Bristol University are working in conjunction with EDF…

Tectonics

In the 1930s, Charles Richter developed a simple scale for…

Tectonics

Researchers at Colombia University have answered a question that has…

Tectonics

How prepared can any government or city be against a…

Tectonics

Benjamin Hennig creates a series of cartograms to demonstrate the…

Wildlife

Could grey seals singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star help develop…

Climate

Deep sea expert Dr Alex Rogers explains the importance of…

Oceans

Analysis of coral cores, extracted from coral reefs in the…

Wildlife

Celebrities and animal welfare groups have been expressing their disappointment…

Geophoto

In a series of photographs from his recent trip to…