The luxury market for shahtoosh is imperiling the Tibetan antelope.

EochaidhEochaidh RabbleRouser
A rare antelope is being killed to make $20,000 scarves.

Because the antelope are wild animals that can’t be domesticated and shorn, the only way to get the wool is to kill them and strip it from their carcasses. Smugglers then sneak the raw wool into India, where artisans in Kashmir weave it into neck-warming wraps. It takes four Tibetan antelope to provide enough wool for just one scarf.

Global demand for shahtoosh wiped out 90 percent of the Tibetan antelope population during the previous century, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which sets the conservation status of wildlife species. Once a valued dowry item in India, shahtooshes are now sought primarily by Westerners, who may pay as much as $20,000 for a single shawl of the right size, color, and design.
Hail Mór-Ríoghain.
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