Illegal species trade targeting New Zealand

A wildlife trade expert is calling on authorities to investigate why our border is a target to so many illegal goods after seizures skyrocketed by 300 percent.

New data shows more than 9000 protected species were intercepted last year, ranging from crocodile jerky to plant-based medicine. The number of seizures has jumped more than 6000 in five years.

The Jane Goodall Institute's ambassador Fiona Gordon says the statistics are shocking.

"All of these species are endangered or threatened in some way, and that's why they're so important - not traded illegally," she told RadioLIVE.

Ms Gordon says it's not good enough and there are a lot of questions to be asked.

"It seems to me that we've got a good handle on what's coming in and where it's from," she says.

"So now we need to start looking back up that chain and work out exactly that. Why are people bringing these items to New Zealand?

"[It's] very unclear at the moment about what's being done at a political level to work to stop this trend continuing."

Newshub.