Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Lone Vietnamese Turtle May Be Last Of Its Kind

Date:
October 10, 2003
Source:
Wildlife Conservation Society
Summary:
After surviving for thousands of years in the lakes of Southeast Asia, the East Asian giant softshell turtle may finally be faced with extinction, as the last member of the species lingers on in Vietnam's Hoan Kiem Lake. Reptile specialists from the Bronx Zoo-based Wildlife Conservation Society recently observed the reptile in its last known habitat and fear it may live out its final years without a mate.

New York (Oct. 9)-- After surviving for thousands of years in the lakes of Southeast Asia, the East Asian giant softshell turtle may finally be faced with extinction, as the last member of the species lingers on in Vietnam's Hoan Kiem Lake. Reptile specialists from the Bronx Zoo-based Wildlife Conservation Society recently observed the reptile in its last known habitat and fear it may live out its final years without a mate.

Related Articles


"This individual could very well be the last of its kind," said John Behler, Curator of Herpetology at the Bronx Zoo, who confirmed that the turtle still exists in Hoan Kiem Lake. "We know next to nothing about this species or its habitat requirements, other than the fact that it is extremely rare and is presumably on the brink of extinction."

Freshwater turtles and tortoises across Asia have become increasingly endangered by a wide variety of threats, such as collection for local consumption, and collection for regional and international food and the pet trade. Of the approximately 90 species of freshwater turtles and tortoises that occur in South Asia, East Asia, Southeast Asia and New Guinea, more than a third are listed in the World Conservation Union's 1996 Red List of Threatened Species as Vulnerable, Endangered, or Critically Endangered. Asian turtles did receive some good news in 2001, when China, a main market for the growing trade in turtles for both food and medicine, restricted the importation of all turtles and tortoises from Cambodia, Thailand and Indonesia.

As for the East Asian giant softshell turtle, other individuals may still exist in the Red River floodplain, but the only recent sighting is the five-foot-long turtle that was spotted by Behler, WCS Asian Turtle Conservation coordinator Doug Hendrie, and WCS veterinarian Paul Calle near Ngoc Son Temple Island on the north end of Hoan Kiem Lake. "No one knows how long this turtle has lived in this lake, or where it came from," added Behler. "Hopefully, it's not the last, and perhaps other individuals can be found to study and, if possible, save."

WCS works to save turtles and tortoises both within Asia and around the world, through research on the ecological needs of different species and by working with governments to limit trade. Scientists working in the WCS Marine Program are working to protect marine turtles as well, specifically along the coast of Nicaragua and in the wider Caribbean, and along the coast of Gabon in Central Africa.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wildlife Conservation Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Wildlife Conservation Society. "Lone Vietnamese Turtle May Be Last Of Its Kind." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 October 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031010072516.htm>.
Wildlife Conservation Society. (2003, October 10). Lone Vietnamese Turtle May Be Last Of Its Kind. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031010072516.htm
Wildlife Conservation Society. "Lone Vietnamese Turtle May Be Last Of Its Kind." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031010072516.htm (accessed December 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, December 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Scientists in Amsterdam say couples transfer tens of millions of microbes when they kiss, encouraging healthy exposure to bacteria. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Brain-Dwelling Tapeworm Reveals Genetic Secrets

Brain-Dwelling Tapeworm Reveals Genetic Secrets

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Cambridge scientists have unravelled the genetic code of a rare tapeworm that lived inside a patient's brain for at least four year. Researchers hope it will present new opportunities to diagnose and treat this invasive parasite. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Fish Species Discovered, Setting Record for World's Deepest

New Fish Species Discovered, Setting Record for World's Deepest

Buzz60 (Dec. 22, 2014) A new species of fish is discovered living five miles beneath the ocean surface, making it the deepest living fish on earth. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins