Dark Web Animals

A hidden corner of the internet has become a haven for those seeking exotic animals. The Kent experts discovered that 90% of illegal wildlife trade on the dark web revolved around plants and fungi coveted for their drug properties such as psilocybe mushrooms or toads with poison glands that secrete 5-MeO-DMT.
African Grey Parrots

African grey parrots are known for their intelligence, and many talk quite Hidden wiki a bit. They are able to pick up words and repeat them back after hearing them just a few times, and some even develop complex vocabularies. In captivity, African grey parrots are very sociable and affectionate with their humans, and they love to play.

These birds are silvery gray in color, with a beautiful thin pale edging to their feathers and a bright scarlet tail. They are the largest species of parrot in Africa, and they have the widest range of vocalizations among all parrots—they can whistle, shriek, scream, and even mimic human speech. They are a monogamous species, and they start searching for mates when they are between three and five years old. Once a pair has found a suitable nesting spot, they will begin breeding.

When it comes to food, these parrots are herbivores and they feed on berries, seeds, nuts, and fruits. Occasionally, they will eat a small invertebrate or plant part such as a leaf or stem. They rarely come to the ground, preferring to stay high up in the treetops where they can find these items more easily. Their zygodactyl feet —two toes pointing back and two facing forward on each foot —give them the ability to maneuver through trees with ease.

In the wild, African grey parrots are preyed upon by snakes and large cats, but they can ward off predators by flashing their bright red tail. This may also help them attract potential mates, as females tend to favor males with the brighter shade of red. In addition, these birds often bob their heads to indicate they want to be touched and petted.

Galagos, also known as bush babies or nagapies, are small nocturnal primates that are native to continental Africa and make up the family Galagidae. They are considered sister groups of the lemurs and lorises. Galagos are very powerful jumpers that can cover ten yards in a series of leaps. They can also run and walk on four legs. They use their long tails to help them balance and move quickly through the trees.

Galagos have a variety of unique characteristics that distinguish them from other lemurs and lorises. Their large eyes are obliquely forward-facing and have a layer of reflective material that helps with night vision. Their ears are moderately large and membranous and can fold flat against their heads. They have a long tail that can be used as a counterweight when jumping, and they have round flat pads on their fingertips and between their fingers. These pads allow them to grasp branches with great strength. They have short forelimbs and elongated hindlimbs that have strong thigh muscles.

Some of the larger galago species are frugivorous, and they feed on fruit and gums, whereas other species require insects for most of their energy needs. When food is scarce, some galagos will fall into a torpor to conserve their energy.

Galagos are very social animals, and they live in a variety of habitats, including forests and savannahs. They are also known to inhabit rocky areas. Galagos are a very important part of their ecosystems, and they play an important role in insect and arthropod population control. Their frugivorous diet also helps with seed dispersal. They are popular zoo attractions and are occasionally kept as pets, but they are also likely to be sources of zoonoses.
Goliath Beetles

Goliath Beetles (Goliathus giganteus) are among the world’s largest insects and are a fascinating sight to behold. They can grow to over four inches long and weigh as much as three or four ounces! Despite their intimidating size, they are harmless to humans. These unique creatures can be found in the tropical forests of Africa and are part of the scarab beetle family. Males display sexual dimorphism and have curved horns that they use to battle rivals. After a successful battle, the male will dig a hole in the ground and lay his eggs, which will hatch into larvae within 12 to 14 days. The larvae feed on decaying animal and plant matter until they reach their adult size. The larvae then bury themselves in the soil and pupate, remaining inactive until the rainy season arrives.

Adult goliath beetles forage by sitting on tree trunks and fallen logs until they smell ripe fruit or sap flowing. The beetles’ strong mandibles can break through the tough outer layers of bark and fruit to access the soft, juicy insides. Goliath beetles play important ecological roles, including nutrient recycling and seed dispersal, and are often kept in captivity as exotic pets due to their interesting appearance and impressive size.

The beetles’ coloration varies depending on the species, with the most common being black and white striped with a different colored abdomen. The thorax and head of the Goliath beetle are rounded, while the legs have claws to allow the insect to grip tightly onto trees. The genus Goliathus is the largest subfamily within the Scarabaeidae family and includes six species, the most notable being the G. regius, G. orientalis, G. cacicus, and G. albosignatus.
Japanese Sea Cucumbers

Known as the earthworms of the sea, these echinoderms are essential for marine benthic productivity and habitat stabilisation but are also valuable commodities in food and medicines. They are harvested as a delicacy in Japan where they are sliced and pickled, but rising living standards in China have also driven demand and poaching of the creature. A recent haul of prickly sea cucumbers worth over US$500,000 was seized in northern Japan, and the men involved were linked to an elite yakuza crime syndicate.

The dark, elongated body of a prickly sea cucumber contains thousands of soft spines that make it hard to swallow. It is popular in Asia where it is eaten raw as a salad or mixed with sesame seeds and salt to create a crunchy side dish called konowata. The gonads are removed from the bodies and fermented to make konoko (or kuchiko) one of the three major chinmi foods in Japan. The skin is then boiled and dried to create trepang.

Researchers have developed a technique to artificially rear these creatures and are aiming for high yields of juveniles. A single male spawned over 900 larvae, which are then fed microalgae and released into rocky sites suitable for their growth. The success of this approach hasn’t been fully tested yet, but it could help boost natural stocks and reduce the need for harvesting in the wild.

An outbreak of a deadly disease has hit natural sea cucumber populations in the west Pacific, which may hamper progress. Infective spores caused by the bacterium Vibrio alginolyticus can cause a deadly vascular infection in the shell and spines of Japanese sea cucumbers Apostichopus japonicus, leading to a painful swollen mouth or body ulcers. It’s a serious problem for the artisanal fisheries that depend on it, and there is urgent need for research into how to prevent the disease from spreading.
Rhino Horn

Rhinoceroses are hunted to the brink of extinction for their horns and other body parts, most of which end up in the illegal trade. The trade in rhinoceros horn has exploded, with demand primarily driven by wealthy Vietnamese people who use it as a status symbol and for medicinal purposes. The horns are also used as ornamental carvings and in high-end gifts. Torching confiscated horns is one way to show poachers and the black market that it's worthless.

In the Middle East, men often wear carved rhino horn as dagger handles. The horns are considered a sign of wealth, and they are given as high-end gifts to business associates. They're also popular in Vietnam and China as paperweights, belt buckles, hair pins, or decorative trophies.

Although it’s been claimed that rhino horn is an aphrodisiac, this is unfounded and has been debunked. A recent study published in Biological Conservation specifically indicted Western media for inaccurately claiming this to be the case by comparing international and Chinese media coverage of rhino horn from 2000 to 2014. The researchers found that while international media emphasized the supposed medical value of the product, the Chinese press consistently focused on its economic or artistic value as well as its alleged aphrodisiac properties.

The horn is composed mainly of the protein keratin, which is also the primary constituent in fingernails, hair, claws, and animal hooves. It’s this material that gives the horn its unique shape and characteristic shine, and it is believed to be responsible for its ability to detect poisons by a chemical reaction.

The international trade of rhino horn is banned under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES), but it’s possible to legally sell the horn within South Africa. However, Born Free opposes the sale of rhino horn and other endangered animals, as it only serves to stimulate demand and encourage poaching.