Police in Nepal have arrested an Indian national and seized 109 tortoises and 162 birds of different species from his possession.
Mohammad Usman, who hails from Patna in Bihar, was arrested on Thursday when police raided a house in Kathmandu and recovered the reptiles and birds kept in boxes and cages.
Officials said the tortoises, which weigh three to five kilograms each, and the birds, including several varieties of parrots, were smuggled into Nepal from India and were on their way to China and Vietnam.
It is believed the seized animals were to be illegally transported to China, where they would end up in restaurants or thriving markets in Vietnam selling animals and birds.
This is the third time Usman has been arrested on charges of smuggling reptiles and birds from India to Nepal.
The rescued animals were handed over to the Central Zoo at Jawalakhel near Kathmandu.