Confiscation of critically endangered box turtle in Da Nang, central Vietnam

Two of 13 critically endangered Bourret's box turtle (Cuora bourreti) at TCC quarantine. Photo by: Nguyen Thu Thuy – ATP/IMC.

On the 8th of May 2017, rangers in Da Nang city, central Vietnam, made a confiscation of 25 turtles including 13 critically endangered Bourret’s box turtle (Cuora bourreti), eight critically endangered Southern Viet Nam Box Turtle (Cuora picturata), and four endangered Keeled Box Turtle (Cuora mouhotii). Reportedly, the animals were confiscated as a result of a cooperative work between the Education for Nature Vietnam (ENV – Vietnam) and Da Nang authorities in the fight against illegal wildlife trade on Facebook.

Three days later, on the 11th of May 2017, the Asian Turtle Program (ATP) and Turtle Conservation Centre (TCC) of Cuc Phuong National Park made their way to Da Nang in order to rescue these turtles to be transferred to the TCC. In addition, there were six turtles including one Chinese stripe-necked turtle (Mauremys sinensis), one Eastern black-bridged leaf turtle (Cyclemys pulchristriata), and four Oldham’s leaf turtle (Cyclemys oldhamii) which had been handed over from local people from Da Nang to rescued by the team.

Unfortunately, one Cuora bourreti died before the rescue team arrived in Da Nang. Others have arrived safe and sound at Cuc Phuong last Saturday. However many are in a poor condition after being in the trade. Many of the turtles suffering from shell rot and dehydrated and have not eaten yet. It might take several months to get these turtles eating again and we expect some might not make it.

We would like to thank Da Nang Provincial Forest Protection Department (FPD) for their seizure and for their transfer of these animals to the TCC.

If you would like to support our rescues and upcoming releases this summer, please make your donation through our website at

Date: 15th May 2017
Press release by: Hoang Van Ha – ATP/IMC and Do Thanh Hao – TCC

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