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Great success in incubating the
Keeled Box Turtle in Vietnam

To those who have worked in captivity with or know the endangered Keeled Box Turtle (Cuora mouhotii) you will also know that the species is not easy to maintain or breed in captivity. But 2016 saw the best year so far at the Turtle Conservation Centre (TCC) in Cuc Phuong National Park, Vietnam.  The Asian Turtle Program (ATP) of Indo Myanmar Conservation (IMC) work with the TCC to build a special incubator chiller in 2014, this allows us to keep the eggs cool in the summer months in Vietnam. Even when room temperatures can reach above 30oC we are able to keep the eggs at between 25-28oC, very important as high temperatures will kill the eggs. Monitoring of the temperatures and humidity’s is still so important in the incubator to make sure they stay acceptable for the species.

We are very happy to report that the incubator is now running well and we had 13 successful Cuora mouhotii hatchlings from 19 eggs. We still need support for equipment and staffing to look after these little hatchlings which are also sensitive little hatchlings have bee now being kept in the warm room at the TCC to get them through the cold winter months. The team have also been following guidance on hatchling care from Job Stumpel a long term breeder of the species in the Netherlands, Europe, to improve on hatchling survival in the species which can be difficult to keep. We hope for even greater success in 2017 and to establish a long term captive assurance population for the species in Vietnam.

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Press release by: Tim McCormack & Nguyen Thu Thuy – ATP/IMC
Date: 12th December 2016

Download this press release in English here

Download this press release in Vietnamese here



Cuora mouhotii hatchling

Above: A group of hatching Keeled Box Turtles together. Photo by: Timothy McCormack - ATP/IMC

Above: Some of the hatchling Keeled Box Turtles (Cuora mouhotii) with identification numbers. Photo by: Pham Van Thong - ATP/IMC


Above: All the hatchling are kept individually in sphagnum moss at a constant 26oC. Photo by: Nguyen Thu Thuy - ATP/IMC.


Cuora mouhotii hatchling

Above: Ms Nguyen Thu Thuy of the Asian Turtle Program, AKA 'The Turtle Mother', with some of the hatchling. Photo by: Timothy McCormack - ATP/IMC>



We would like to thank Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, the Zoological Society London, Bristol Zoo and the National Capital American Association of Zoo Keepers (NCAAZK) for their support of the Asian Turtle Program and Turtle Conservation Centre (TCC) and to Job Stumpel for advice on care.

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For further information, please contact:
Asian Turtle Program (ATP) - Indo-Myanmar Conservation
Office: Room#1806 CT1, C14 Bac Ha Building, To Huu road, Nam Tu Liem district, Hanoi, Vietnam
PO Box 46
Tel: +84 (0) 24 7302 8389


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


MBZ ATP would like to thanks the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund for supporting this website
Asian Turtle Program - Indo-Myanmar Conservation
Room#1806 CT1, C14 Bac Ha Building, To Huu Street, Nam Tu Liem District, Hanoi, Vietnam
PO Box 46
Phone:+84 (0) 24 7302 8389

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