Phu Yen: A growing trend called hunting golden turtles

Turtle trap nets are stretched across the narrow part of a stream so that all golden coin turtles accidentally pass by the areas will be trapped and caught. Photo credit: Vietnamnet

Recently, many people from local mountain areas in Phu Yen have ceased faming jobs to chase the Vietnamese Pond turtle (Mauremys annamensis), now it’s called  golden turtle (rua vang). Experts in hunting yellow turtles shared, turtles preferred to inhabit in watered-areas like canals, ponds, rivers.

Normally, Vietnamese Pond turtles have average and small sizes. A big turtle weighs over 1 kilo, a small one weighs about 0,4 kilo.

It is the beauty of clear and amazing patterns on their shell enclosing with yellow-striped lines under their stomach which differs from other kinds that attracts turtle traders.

In the beginning, the price of turtles costs few million Vietnam Dong/kg. Next, it rises to more than ten to few tens million VND.
After one month, traders aggressively/ vigorously seeking for turtles helps to skyrocket the price to 120 – 150 million VND ($5,714 – $7,142) for a kilogram, even highest peak is 300 million Dong ($14,285).

The price is for a kilogram of turtles currently as precious/ valuable as the amount of money people must work really hard in a long time. Therefore, local people from mountain areas such as Son Hoa, Song Hinh, Dong Xuan (Phu Yen) are fascinated by this big picture. This also triggers a spreading trend among local people, accounting for a large proportion of population from the locals.

Here are some pictures captured by journalists who follow hunting-turtles experts.


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