76 endangered turtles returned home in northern Vietnam

We have just completed our fourth release of tortoises and freshwater turtles for 2020, with our team working from the 7th to 9th of September 2020 to return. This release involved 25 endangered Big-headed Turtles (Platysternon megacephalum) and 51 endangered Four-eyed Turtles (Sacalia quadriocellata); the Four-eyed Turtles were offspring hatched from our conservation breeding efforts at the Turtle Conservation Centre (TCC) in Cuc Phuong National Park, Ninh Binh Province.

A release team walking upstream to find suitable habitats for Four-eyed Turtles and Big-headed Turtles. Photo by Hoang Van Ha – ATP/IMC

The team from the Asian Turtle Program (ATP) of Indo-Myanmar Conservation (IMC) and the TCC had to make numerous trips from the base camp used for the release to get to suitable release locations to spread the animals out. Conditions were not easy, with a lot of time spent in slippery streams, scrambling up waterfalls and with heavy rain, but we are all happy to see these animals back in the wild and we still have more releases planned for 2020.

Three of 51 Four-eyed Turtles (Sacalia quadriocellata) of this release. All of them were successfully bred in captivity and now can be released back to the wild. Photo by Hoang Van Ha – ATP/IMC.

We would like to give our appreciation to the hard-working staff who have provided great care to these animals in captivity and those who went on this physically demanding release trip. We are also grateful to the Fondation Segré Conservation Fund and the EDGE of Existence programme for their support to this project, our other project partners (the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), Paignton Zoo, Nordens Ark, the Centre for Natural Resources and Environmental Studies (CRES), Cleveland Metroparks Zoo) and all of our numerous donors and partners who have contributed along the way.

Press release by: Hoang Van Ha – ATP/IMC
Date: 10th September 2020

Download the English version here
Download the Vietnamese version here

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