"Survivalists" Arrested For Skinning And Eating Endangered Animals In YouTube Videos

Nature Life TV via YouTube

James Felton 15 May 2018, 14:32

A couple have been arrested for making "survival" videos for their YouTube channel in which they skinned and ate endangered and protected species.

Ah Lin Tuch and her husband Phoun Raty monetized the videos that saw them eat endangered fishing cats, king cobras, stingrays and frogs, the Metro reports. Viewers of their YouTube channel Natural Life TV reported the couple to the authorities after realizing that several of the species they prepared and ate on camera were protected.

Other videos, which have been deleted from their page, showed Ah Lin eating a large lizard, shark meat, frogs, and a number of protected birds. 

The Minister of Environment in Cambodia, where the couple lived, ordered a manhunt for the couple on Wednesday. 

Ah Lin holds up a stingray, which she eats in one of her videos. Natural Life TV.

The couple reportedly admitted that they cooked and ate the animals and have apologized for destroying the wildlife. They say, however, that they bought the animals from a local food market and did not actually kill them themselves.

"We are now in the process of taking legal action against them while the working group is preparing a report on the matter," said Chea Sam Arng from the Environment Ministry's General Department of Administration for Nature Conservation and Protection

"The animals that were cooked were mostly not on the endangered list, but are protected. Only one species was in danger of extinction."

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The case has been criticised by several conservation groups.

The couple says that they were unaware that the animals they skinned and ate were on the protected list, and weren't sure which animals they were being investigated for eating.

"I bought the wildlife at Preak Phnov and we started filming our videos since December," Ah Lin said. "Now I have already admitted my mistake".

The couple has removed videos that show them cooking rarer species, but have left up video guides to capturing frogs in the wild, as well as how to prepare them, in videos that are still monetized. 

Natural Life TV

The couple say they have earned around $500 from the videos, which are now being investigated by authorities.

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