Initial media coverage suggesting that COVID-19 may have spilled-over via pangolins has been refuted.
Here we present a unique and original dataset recording wild animal sales across Wuhan City’s animal markets between May 2017 and November 2019.
Across all 17 shops, vendors reported total sales of 36,295 individuals, belonging to 38 terrestrial wild animal species, averaging 1170.81 individuals per month (Standard deviation (SD) = 445.01, n = 31; Table 1). Including species sold by weight inflated this total to 47,381 individuals. Notably, no pangolin or bat species were among these animals for sale.
Notably, vendors freely disclosed a variety of protected species on sale illegally in their shops, therefore they would not benefit from specifically concealing pangolin trade or the trade in any particular species, and so we are confident this list is complete
h/t Richard H Ebright who has all sorts of interesting things on his twitter feed.