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School and Community Programs raise the profile of endangered turtles
in central Vietnam

Central Vietnam is well known for its high diversity in flora and fauna, in this respect turtles are no different. Interview surveys completed since 2009 by the Asian Turtle Program (ATP) of Cleveland Metroparks Zoo have recorded 18 species in central Vietnam, with some districts reportedly having up to eleven species. Nam Dong district in Thua Thien Hue province in one such important area, results from surveys in October 2012 indicated that the district had high diversity and good populations of the critically endangered Bourret's box turtle (Cuora bourreti). With the species still suffering from hunting in the region.

From the 11th to 16th of March 2013 , the ATP under Education for Nature Vietnam (ENV) held an environmental education program in Nam Dong District. A series of community meetings and school programs brought attention to critical endangered turtles and the threats they face amongst local communities.

The team held five Cuora meetings in three communes that reported good information for box turtles. In total 219 locals participated from five villages. Group discussions highlighted the current status of box turtles and the reason for their decline.

School program s were also held at Thuong Nhat Secondary School, where 153 students were introduced to Vietnam's 25 tortoise and turtle species with an emphasis on animals they might see in forest surrounding their school. While the enjoyable board game, “Lucky Turtle”, about the plight of a hatchling turtles life avoiding threats in the forest, proved a hit as always.


Press release by: Vo Si Lam – Asian Turtle Program

19th March 2013

Above: In Nam Dong district forests still provide good habitat for the critically endangered Cuora bourreti

Above: A critically endangered Bourret's box turtle (Cuora bourreti) found during field and interview surveys in October 2012


Above: Lam introduces the kids to the turtles that occur in their region, making sure to emphasize the endemic box turtle in the region (Cuora bourreti)

Above: Group discussions push locals to address topics about turtle declines and encourages critical thinking to resolve the threats to turtle populations.



Thank you:


We would like to thank the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF), Turtle Conservation Fund (TCF) and the Forest Protection Department (FPD) of Thua Thien Hue Province for supporting this activity.

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For more information please contact:

Asian Turtle Program (ATP) of Cleveland Metoparks 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 3519 0383




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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