Endangered species? Not here!
Since starting out, I have always had a policy of never using threatened or endangered species in the dispensary. This is consistent with the principles adopted and enforced by CITES (an international treaty to protect endangered animals and plants) In the early years of practice, my herbal display often drew comments about the use of animal medicines such as snakes, horns, bones or insects! Although tempted to pull something scary out of a hidden jar to satisfy the anticipated curiosity, I had nothing. How boring.
Regarding the use of medicines of animal origin, I occasionally use either oyster shell, abalone shell, (both minerals) or cuttlefish bone. If I consider one of these to be of particular benefit, I will ask before including these substances in a formula. Please keep in mind that historically, (and in our lifetime) people simply did whatever they could to survive during times when they endured physical hardship, environmental conditions were challenging, and nutrition limited. As a traditional medicine with a very long history of continuous use, plants, animals, and minerals were all utilised by Chinese herbalists in their prescriptions to meet the needs and restore the health of their patients.
If you have any questions about the treatment options of acupuncture or herbal medicines, please ask.