Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Endangered Sea Turtles Make A Dramatic Turnaround; Poaching Nearly Eliminated In Central American Nesting Ground

Date:
January 27, 2004
Source:
Wildlife Conservation Society
Summary:
Poaching of a critically important population of endangered hawksbill sea turtles along the coast of Nicaragua has dropped by more than 79 percent, thanks to a unique program developed by the Bronx Zoo-based Wildlife Conservation Society that enlists support from local communities, fishing groups, and government agencies.

NEW YORK (Jan. 26, 2004)-- Poaching of a critically important population of endangered hawksbill sea turtles along the coast of Nicaragua has dropped by more than 79 percent, thanks to a unique program developed by the Bronx Zoo-based Wildlife Conservation Society that enlists support from local communities, fishing groups, and government agencies.

Over a four-year period, the practice of illegally removing turtle eggs from nests has dropped from nearly 100 percent on several islands known as the Pearl Cays, to approximately 21 percent during 2002, according to the researchers, who published their results in the latest issue of the journal Chelonian Conservation and Biology.

"The Pearl Cays Hawksbill Conservation Project demonstrates how important local partners can be in protecting an endangered species such as the hawksbill turtle," said WCS scientist Dr. Cynthia Lagueux, who has conducted research on turtle populations along the Nicaraguan coast for more than a decade. "Beach surveys and active protection of females and their eggs can make a difference for the survival of this endangered species in this part of the Caribbean."

Weighing up to 200 pounds with a shell some 3 feet in length, the hawksbill turtle has vanished from many areas of its former range around the world. It is hunted for food, eggs and its valuable shell, which is commercially sold as "tortoise-shell" for use in eyeglass frames, hairbrushes, and a host of other fashion items. The species is listed as "critically endangered" by the World Conservation Union (IUCN). Further, hawksbill turtles are listed under Appendix I in the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES), which bans all international trade.

The project's engagement of local communities and government bodies started back in 2000, with meetings of nine communities with fishermen known to use the Pearl Cays area. These meetings provided the residents with biological information on hawksbills along with the results of their 1999 surveys. This in turn helped convince local people that losing all turtle eggs would eventually result in the species demise. Community leaders in support of the protecting the turtles were asked to sign a petition, while radio spots, written and performed by coastal residents, promoted the need to conserve hawksbill turtles and support the Pearl Cays Hawksbill Conservation Project.

While recent conservation efforts and educational outreach have been effective in increasing the number of hatchlings produced in the Pearl Cays, other threats have emerged, particularly habitat degradation of nesting islands by private individuals. The construction of buildings and other structures near or on beaches used by hawksbills destroys the vegetation and other conditions needed for successful reproduction.

"While we've enjoyed success in bringing more hawksbill turtles into the world, we also need to counteract threats to the habitats on which the species relies for reproduction," added Lagueux. "A management plan is needed to keep development away from these critical sites."


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. "Endangered Sea Turtles Make A Dramatic Turnaround; Poaching Nearly Eliminated In Central American Nesting Ground." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 January 2004. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/01/040127083014.htm>.
Wildlife Conservation Society. (2004, January 27). Endangered Sea Turtles Make A Dramatic Turnaround; Poaching Nearly Eliminated In Central American Nesting Ground. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/01/040127083014.htm
Wildlife Conservation Society. "Endangered Sea Turtles Make A Dramatic Turnaround; Poaching Nearly Eliminated In Central American Nesting Ground." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/01/040127083014.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Cadaver Dogs Aid Search for More Victims of Suspected Indiana Serial Killer

Cadaver Dogs Aid Search for More Victims of Suspected Indiana Serial Killer

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) Police in Gary, Indiana are using cadaver dogs to search for more victims after a suspected serial killer confessed to killing at least seven women. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
White Lion Cubs Unveiled to the Public

White Lion Cubs Unveiled to the Public

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Oct. 21, 2014) Visitors to Belgrade zoo meet a pair of three-week-old lion cubs for the first time. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) Where's a body buried? Buster's nose can often tell you. He's a cadaver dog, specially trained to find human remains and increasingly being used by law enforcement and accepted in courts. These dogs are helping solve even decades-old mysteries. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) Two white lion cubs, an extremely rare subspecies of the African lion, were recently born at Belgrade Zoo. They are being bottle fed by zoo keepers after they were rejected by their mother after birth. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
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