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No. 61, 29th December 2012


1. Kuala Lumpur city, Malaysia: Egging on the terrapin revival

SOURCE: the star online news - - DATE: 27th December 2012

WWF-Malaysia's conservation efforts of the painted terrapins (Batagur borneoensis), produced significant results, said its executive director Datuk Dr Dionysius Sharma. A “buy back” scheme where the organisation purchases terrapin eggs and turtle eggs from the collectors has led to the conservation of terrapins and turtles by preventing a large number of eggs being eaten. He said that about 10 nesting locations were handed over to WWF-Malaysia in 2009 by egg collectors in the area of Kuala Baru Utara and Mengabang Sekepeng . Since last year, WWF-Malaysia had been in charge of 101 terrapin nesting locations. “Our efforts have increased the population of terrapins by around 78%,” said Dr Sharma.

Link to this web article online (English)



2. Hai Phong province, Vietnam: Illegal turtle shells and pangolin scales
SOURCE: Thanh Niên Online - - DATE: 27th December 2012

Customs officers in the northern sea port of Chua Ve, Hai Phong province have confiscated 2.6 tons of t urtle shells and pangolin scales that were concealed among snail shells on a boat. This is one of several cases that Hai Phong customs revealed recently.

Link to this web article online (Vietnamese)


3. Mwali island, Comoros islands: Three dead, 30 sickened after eating turtle meat

SOURCE: The Global Dispatch;
DATE: 28th December 2012

Three people died, including an unborn child, from turtle meat food poisoning in Ndrondroni town on the island of Mohéli (Mwali) in the Comoros, according to a report on 27th December 2012. In addition, Comorian authorities reported at least 30 more cases since last weekend. Symptoms suffered by those affected included acute stomach pain and vomiting. The three fatalities, according to the report included two boys and an unborn child whose mother consumed turtle meat and who was also hospitalized but recovered. The deaths and illnesses were the result of chelonitoxism, a form of food poisoning caused by toxins in the turtle meat. Children are exceptionally susceptible to falling ill and there is no antidote for treatment. This type of food poisoning is rare, probably due to the fact that sea turtles are protected in the Comoros islands and eating their meat is taboo for some indigenous groups. Comorian authorities have declared a ban on the consumption of turtle meat and eggs. A mild case of this type of food poisoning is characterized by a rapid onset of gastrointestinal symptoms and other non-specific symptoms. Those affected usually recover within a week.

Link 1 to this web article online (English)

Link 2 to this web article online (French)


4.  Mexico city, Mexico: Traffickers Arrested in Mexico with 22,000 Turtle Eggs

SOURCE: Fox News Latino -
DATE: 29th December 2012

Two people were arrested in Mexico as they attempted to traffic 22,470 Olive Ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea) eggs on a public bus. The arrest was made on a highway in the southern state of Oaxaca on an unspecified date by officers patrolling beaches where the turtles nest, Mexico's environmental protection agency said in a brief report. The suspects were also transporting 105 turtle parts of the same species.

Link 1 to this web article online (English)

Link 2 to this web article online (English)



5. Karachi city, Pakistan: Rare turtle seen along Sindh coast


Marine scientists associated with the World Wildlife Fund-Pakistan have recently observed rare Olive Ridley turtles (Lepidochelys olivacea) on Pakistani shores. The endangered sea turtle was believed to have become extinct in Pakistan several years ago. WWF-Pakistan officials confirmed on Friday that they have recorded a viable population of Olive Ridley turtles in Pakistan after seven years of the species' absence. “The rediscovery of Olive Ridley turtles in Pakistani waters is a good sign indicating that the marine environment, which is seriously threatened by marine pollution, habitat degradation and fishing operations, still is healthy enough for this unique species to survive here,” said Rab Nawaz, a WWF-Pakistan official. He also said that it is necessary to declare a marine protected area to ensure that the turtles remain and thrive in Pakistani waters.

Link to this web article online (English)

6. Shanghai city, China: Aquarium bursts in shopping centre, dozens of turtles killed

SOURCE: Daily Mail Online news - - DATE: 27th December 2012

16 people have been hurt after an aquarium burst at a shopping mall in Shanghai. The thirty-three tonne tank which housed sharks, turtles and fish shattered without warning at the city's Orient shopping centre on 18 th December, 2012. The explosion destroyed a nearby cosmetics counter where one worker had to be pulled to safety. The tank was installed just two years ago but investigators say a combination of low temperatures and weak materials caused the catastrophic collapse. Three lemon sharks (Negaprion brevirostris) and dozens of turtles (unknown species) and small fish were killed in the incident.

Link 1 to this web article online (English)

Link 2 to this web article online (English)

Link 3 to this web article online (Vietnamese)


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