Federal Agents Found A Tiger Cub In A Duffle Bag At The Mexico Border & This is More Common Than You’d Think

On Monday of this week a duffel bag was retrieved by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, when three men crossed the U.S. border into Texas with an illegal and highly valued product.

That product was a 3-or-4-month-old male tiger cub.

The rescued tiger cub was taken to Brownsville’s Gladys Porter zoo, a zoo that specializes in endangered species for treatment and recovery. It’s unsure who the cub was intended for, or who was looking to purchase it, but the animal was one of millions of exotic wildlife that is traded annually.

In a 2015 report, Defenders of Wildlife estimated that $7 billion to $23 billion is made in the selling of plants and animals, with Latin America being a prime region for exotic and highly valued species. With “50,000 animals and wildlife products seized at U.S. ports of entry from 2005 to 2014,” according to The Washington Post.

The illegal selling of exotic wildlife is not only a threat to the animals being traded, but to wildlife itself. Many smugglers are aware of the risk, and often times collect 3,5 or 10 to 1 of the animals looking to be purchased, because the perish rate is so high.

The tiger cub is expected to make a full recovery.