August 15, 2006
Sell the tigers
Barun Mitra says so in an op-ed in the New York Times (found via Cafe Hayek). Mitra reminds us that the prospects of tigers have not gotten any better since their trade was forbidden more than thirty years ago, and despite the increasing amounts of resources allocated to their conservation. Allowing the trade of tigers and tiger products would create a big incentive to breed tigers. Tigers breed easily in captivity. An abundant supply of tigers would lower their prices and would reduce or eliminate the incentive to poach them in their native ranges. Additionally, if people living in tiger habitat could sell tiger hunting licenses they would have an incentive to protect tiger populations. In Mitra's words, market economics greatly favor the tiger.