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Interview survey for the Keeled Box turtle (Cuora mouhotii) in buffer zone of Pu Hu Natural Reserve and Cuc Phuong National Park

From the 01st to 11th of April 2008 an interview survey focused on turtles was conducted by Hoang Van Ha, a Student from Vietnam Forestry University and Thieu Quang Quyet of the Asian Turtle Program of Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. The surveys were focused on collecting information on the Keeled Box turtle (Cuora mouhotii) in Pu Hu Natural Reserved and Cuc Phuong National Park as part of Ha’s university thesis.

The surveys provided additional information on the species which is currently a focus of a radio telemetry study at Cuc Phuong National Park. Its also the first time that interview have been conducted around Pu Hu Nature Reserve focused on identifying turtle species which may be present.

During the surveys 101 interviews were conducted with a great deal learned on hunting techniques and seasons while field records were completed for four turtles of three species. Interestingly some remote communities still consume turtles in this area with two shells of the critically endangered Indochinese Box Turtle (Cuora galbinifrons) seen kept for display in a local house in Quan Hoa District, Thanh Hoa Province where they had been caught between 25 to 40 years ago. Reports indicate the species may still survive in the area but in low numbers. The Keeled box turtle, Cuora mouhotii and Striped – necked leaf turtle, Cyclemys tcheponensis were also observed with the Cuora mouhotii apparently still often caught in the park while people are collect land snails for food.

Press release by: Hoang Van Ha – Asian Turtle Program, Vietnam program coordinator




























man holding turtleThe shell of an Indochinese Box Turtle, kept as a souvenirs since 1965


cuora mouhotii

A Keeled Box Turtle (Cuora mouhotii) kept in one household near Cuc Phuong National Park


leopard cat

A young leopard cat (Prinonailurus bengalensis) kept as a pet in a local household

Thank you:



We would like to thank The Ocean Park Conservation Fund, Hong Kong (OPCFHK), EAZA Shellshock Campaign for supporting this survey. Also Cuc Phuong National Park and Pu Hu Nature Reserve for their continued involvement in turtle conservation activities.




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For more information please contact:

Asian Turtle Program (ATP) of Cleveland Metroparks Zoo,
Office: Room#1302, Thanh Cong Tower, 57 Lang Ha Street,
Ba Dinh, Hanoi, Vietnam

Tel: +84 (0) 4 3514 9750
Fax: +84 (0) 4 3514 9750 Ext11




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