A Chinese man has recently been apprehended by authorities at the Colombo airport while he was trying to smuggle 200 live scorpions in plastic containers out of Sri Lanka. The Sri Lanka authorities assume that the man was smuggling the scorpions for their venom and would have extracted the venom after reaching China.
While the identity of the man has not been revealed, it is known that the man who was apprehended was Chinese and planned on taking the scorpions back to China. The smuggler was fined Rs 100,000 ($550) and then was allowed to fly back home. According to the Sri Lankan's Instagram post, the man was trying to smuggle 200 live scorpions. The scorpions were packed in plastic boxes. The plastic containers were concealed in his luggage and custom officers arrested him as he was trying to leave the country.
Sri Lanka has around 18 species of venomous scorpions and out of those species, only one is known to be fatal to humans. The species of the scorpions that were being smuggled has not been revealed. While the country has strict laws against the smuggling of flora and fauna, smuggling attempts are still frequent.
According to the Sri Lankan Department of Wildlife Conservation, Sri Lanka's first National Policy on Wildlife Conservation was first approved by the Sri Lankan cabinet in June 1990. The Wildlife policy that operates today tackles a lot of the same concerns but in an updated form and also adds points as required by the evolving needs of the Sri Lankan society. The department redesigned the wildlife policy to suit modern conservation concepts and practices.
The updated policy was designed by a multidisciplinary task force which was comprised of experts in the areas of biodiversity, economics and sociology. Respected private sector members also contributed to its development.