World first procedure on baby pangolin performed at Joburg vet

A female baby pangolin, who was fighting for her life just four days ago after being rescued from illegal wildlife trade, is getting stronger each day. Vets named her Menina and put a placed a plastic peg tube inside her to assist with feeding – a world first for the procedure on a pangolin.

Menina, who is only three months old, was taken to the Johannesburg Wildlife Veterinary Hospital by police on Tuesday. She is currently receiving treatment at the Fourways Vet Hospital after being starved for an extensive period. Karin Lourens, a veterinarian at the Johannesburg Wildlife Veterinary Hospital said she is getting healthier every day.

“She’s gained 120 grams over the weekend, which is very good for such a small pango”

Lourens says Menina is expected to be in hospital for at least another three months as she is still in infancy and recuperating. The baby pango weighs 2,4kg. According to Lourens, Menina should weigh at 5kg before getting discharged.

According to National Geographic, the pangolin is the most trafficked mammal in the world as there is a lucrative market for them, often used for medicine and luxury goods. Lourens agreed but said she could not give any details around the case as it was under police investigation.

Updates on the condition of Menina have been posted on Facebook.

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