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Large confiscation of endangered Big-headed Turtles in northern Vietnam    

On the 4th of October 2016, Economic police of Thai Binh province stopped a truck with two individuals (Ngô Văn Hạnh and Lê Anh Đức) from Quang Binh Province. In the vehicle they found 61 Sunda pangolin (Manis javanica) and 37 Big-headed Turtles (Platysternon megacephalum). All the animals were transferred to Cuc Phuong National Park, Ninh Binh province by Thai Binh Forest Protection Department (FPD) and the Police. As a species often found in fast flowing mountain streams and waterfalls, the confiscation of these animals in the lowland coastal province of Thai Binh suggests the animals were being transported north towards Mong Cai town, Quang Ninh province, a major border crossing point between Vietnam and China.

The Big-headed Turtle is considered endangered on the IUCN red-list 2015 and protected under Vietnamese national law, Decree 32/2006 ND-CP as well as listed in Appendix I by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). All the turtles are now being cared for at the Turtle Conservation Centre (TCC) in Cuc Phuong with the support of the Asian Turtle Program (ATP), fish hooks have already been found in a number of individuals and they will likely need surgeries.

The TCC and ATP would like to thank all the organisations and individuals that continues to support our rescue and rehabilitation efforts.

Press release by: Thanh Do Hao - Turtle Conservation Centre (TCC), Cuc Phuong National Park
Date: 5th October 2016

Download this press release in English here

Download this press release in Vietnamese here


big-headed turtle confiscation

A truck stopped by the Economic Police in Thai Binh Province was found to be loaded with 61 pangolins and 37 Big-headed Turtles - Photo by: Do Thanh Hao


Big-headed turtle confiscation

Fortunately, the turtles had been packed individually as this aggressive species will often injure or kill each other if together. Photo by: Nguyen Hong Quang


Big-headed turtle confiscation

Mr. Do Thanh Hao from the Turtle Conservation Centre (TCC) in Cuc Phuong National Park received the turtles from Thai Binh Forest Protection Department.
Photo by: Nguyen Hong Quang


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For further information, please contact:
Turtle Conservation Centre (TCC) - Cuc Phuong National Park
Nho Quan Dist., Ninh Binh Prov., Vietnam
Tel: +84 (0) 30384 8090

Asian Turtle Program (ATP) - Indo-Myanamar Conservation
Office: Room#1806 CT1, C14 Bac Ha Building, To Huu road, Nam Tu Liem district, Hanoi, Vietnam
PO Box 46
Tel: +84 (0) 4 7302 8389


    ATP would like to thanks the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund for supporting this website
Asian Turtle Program - Indo Myanamar Conservation
Room 1806 CT1, C14 Bac Ha Building, To Huu Street, Nam Tu Liem district, Hanoi, Vietnam
PO Box 46
Phone:+84 (0) 4 7302 8389

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