July 19, 2018 12:29 pm

Quebec authorities bust ring that targeted black bears for their gallbladders

A black bear.

File Photo / Global News
A A

Quebec authorities say they have cracked down on a poaching ring that allegedly killed black bears for their gallbladders and shipped the organs primarily to Asia.

READ MORE: Charges possible for B.C. family caught hand-feeding black bears

Jasmin Larouche, the head of wildlife protection in Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, says the ring operated in different parts of the province.

WATCH BELOW: Grizzly bears in Alberta caught on camera chasing black bear away from dinner

Larouche said he did not know how many gallbladders were seized.

READ MORE: Grizzly bears in Alberta caught on camera chasing black bear away from dinner

The organ is highly coveted for the bile it contains, with some people believing it is effective in treating various illnesses as well as being an aphrodisiac.

WATCH BELOW: Sleepy black bear wakes from hibernation

Authorities began their operation in 2015.

READ MORE: 140 B.C. black bears put down in the last two months — down 82 from same time last year

The Quebec Forestry Department estimates about 60 people were involved in the ring and that they face a total of 121 charges.

© 2018 The Canadian Press

Report an error

Comments

Want to discuss? Please read our Commenting Policy first.