The Chinese are very interested to buy donkeys from Nigeria, to the point where the animal is now considered as an endangered species, a Daily Post report says.
Reports have it that demand for its skin is increasing in faraway China.
Saminu Haladu, a middle-man in the donkey section of the Maigatari International Cattle Market revealed that over 5,000 donkeys are transported to South-Eastern states from the market every week.
He said about 20 trailers loaded with donkeys are leaving the market to the South weekly, largely to Anambra, Enugu and Bayelsa states.
“We’ve heard that the skin is taken to China because of the high demand over there. But here, they highest they can buy a donkey is N35,000 or N40,000. If it is sick, then about N10,000 to N15,000.”
Haladu also said the demand for donkey’s hides in China was very high in 2015, particularly.
“We learnt that the Chinese people buy the hide at the equivalent of N12,000 apiece, which has made the price of the animal rise.
According to him, insurgency and exchange rate are grossly affecting the supply of donkeys to the market from neighbouring Niger Republic, which is the merchants’ major source of donkeys.
Donkeys are not bred in large number by any major farm or organization anywhere in Nigeria, so their population are dwindling, and fast. As a result, some experts have declared them as an “endangered” species.