Pet roaches face ban

BANGKOK: Public Health Minister Sudarat Keyurapan has warned that cockroaches imported from Madagascar could face an import ban if research finds that they are dangerous to human beings. K. Sudarat’s warning follows the discovery that many vendors at the famed Chatuchak Market recently started selling the cockroches as pets. The imported cockroaches are unusually large, certainly bigger than any cockroaches native to Thailand. The decision to ban the cockroaches will rest on research by the Department of Livestock Development. “If the research proves that the cockroaches are dangerous to people it will result in them being automatically banned in Thailand,” K. Sudarat explained. Chitapha Kedwan, an entomologist at Kasetsart University, warned, “Most cockroaches live in dirty places infested with many types of bacteria that cause diseases that can be extremely dangerous to human beings.” She also warned that cockroaches breed very quickly in climates such as that of Thailand. “I’m worried that people who have imported or recently bought these cockroaches will be frightened by this news and release them into an environment where they will breed very quickly and cause the spread of diseases fatal to human beings,” K.Chitapha explained. “If anybody finds them, please send them to the Entomology Department at Kasetsart University as soon as possible,” she added.

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