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No. 73, 1st April 2013

Thanh Hóa province, Vietnam: Marked loggerhead turtle caught by fishermen

SOURCE: Dân trí Online, – DATE: 28th March 2013

On the 28th of March fishermen in Hai Ninh village, Tinh Gia district, Thanh Hoa province, caught a loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta Caretta) that was trapped in their fishing net. The 1.2 m long turtle weighed about 80 – 100kg had a red paint mark on its shell believed to be from a conservation organization. The fishermen found that the turtle had few minor injuries on its body. The local authority was informed about the case and the turtle is currently being held by the commune police.

Link 1 to this web article online (Vietnamese)

Link 2 to this web article online (Vietnamese)

© Dân trí Online

2. Hà Tĩnh province, Vietnam: 10 Orange-headed temple turtles seized

SOURCE: Customs News Online, – DATE: 27th March 2013

On the 27th of March the Customs Department of Cầu Treo Border Gate, Hà Tĩnh province, seized 10 Orange-headed temple turtles (Heosemys grandis) with a total weight of 30kg from a smuggler who escaped after being stopped by the customs officers. The animals were packed in a sack and transported on a motorbike which was heading towards the inland. The confiscated animals were transferred to Ha Tinh Customs and then handed over to Ha Tinh Forest Protection Department.

Link to this web article online (Vietnamese)


3. Indonesia: Tainted Turtle Meat Kills at Least Three Kids, Poisons Hundreds in West Sumatra

SOURCE: Jakarta Globe,
DATE: 28th March 2013

At least three people have died and hundreds more were sickened after consuming toxic turtle meat in Mentawai Island, West Sumatra, a local news portal reported on Wednesday. Rijel Samaloisa, deputy mayor of Mentawai, reported that three children — a 3-year-old, an 8-year-old and an 11-month-old – died after eating the tainted meat. He said that more than 140 residents of a fisherman's community in the Sao hamlet of Bosua village, South Sipora ate a big turtle that had been caught by a local fisherman on Sunday, 24th of March. Symptoms included vomiting and acute stomach pain. The deputy mayor added that some victims died because their families could not seek treatment in time. Some of the turtle meat was sent to a laboratory for testing and to establish why it caused these deaths. Rijel said this was not the first time Mentawai people were sickened after consuming turtle meat. “People have never learned from similar cases like this in the past,” he said. Rijel also said that the Mentawai administration would issue a mandate to prohibit the consumption of turtle and urge local people on the island to refrain from eating turtle meat.

Link 1 to this web article online (English)

Link 2 to this web article online (Vietnamese)

Link 3 to this web article online (Vietnamese)


Indian star tortoises catch the attention of Vietnamese pet collectors

DATE: 29th March 2013

Indian star tortoises (Geochelone elegans) are becoming increasingly popular with pet collectors in Vietnam because of their beautiful appearance. The species has been imported for some years now and is sold for high prices. Buyers have to pay about 1,000,000VND (approx. $47) for a juvenile tortoise (5 – 6cm in length). With larger animals fetching a higher price.

Link to this web article online (Vietnamese)

© Reuters


5. South Africa: Corral atoll giant turtle numbers rise

SOURCE: TIMESLIVE, – DATE: 25th March 2013

100,000 Aldabra giant tortoises (Aldabrachelys giganteaone) with some weighing a staggering 250 kilogrammes (550 pounds) and with shells more than a metre (yard) across are discovered on Aldabra, an isolated coral atoll in Indian Ocean. The reptiles are one of the world's largest tortoises and reportedly live for more than 200 years. They were once threatened by invasive species including goats and rats but efforts to eliminate those animals and preserve the last remaining habitat of this unique reptile have been paying off. The tortoise population has remained stable for the past two decades while the humans on this archipelago - 1,100 kilometres (700 miles) west from the main island of the Seychelles - has never grown much beyond ten.

Link to this web article online (English)

© Tribalninja / Wikimedia Commons

6. Key West, USA: Two charged with butchering protected loggerhead turtle

SOURCE: KEYSNET, – DATE: 25th March 2013

Two fishermen have been charged with butchering a loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta Caretta), protected under the federal Endangered Species Act, off Key West. On Friday, Alejandro Alvarez, 63, of Miami, and Israel Bonochea Ruiz, 29, of Key West were detected by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers as they were driving a small wooden skiff to a mangrove shoreline. After checking the suspicious pickup truck, the officers unexpectedly "observed the bag to clearly possess a federally protected butchered loggerhead sea turtle." Alvarez and Ruiz were arrested.

Link 1 to this web article online (English)

Link 2 to this web article online (English)


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