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No. 117, 7th February 2014

1. Over 2,000 Pig-nosed Turtles fly home to a troubled future

SOURCE: – DATE: 6th February 2014

A long trip home to Indonesia had been made on 6th February for more than 2,000 smuggled Pig-nosed turtles seized in Hong Kong last month. This number just represents a quarter of the 11,122 Pig-nosed turtles reported, showing a growing threat of illegal wildlife trade. The 2,264 live Pig-nosed turtles (Carettochelys insculpta) repatriated on Tuesday were part of an original seizure of over 2,754 turtles by Hong Kong by the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department on the 12th of January. These turtles were cared for by the Kadoorie Farm and Botainic Garden before being repatriated to Jakarta. Although authorities in Indonesia traced to an address in Jakarta, including a contact number, they have yet to make any arrests. Similarly, no arrests have been made in Hong Kong, which is fast turning into the preferred destination for Pig-nosed Turtle traffickers.

Link to this web article online (English)

© Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden

2. Chinese workers illegally hunt and eat rare turtle species in Iran

SOURCE: – DATE: 4th February 2014

On the 3rd of March, Ahmad Reza Lahijanzade, Mehr news agency reported that Chinese workers who work in the Azadegan oil field inn Iran's Southern Khuzestan province illegally hunt and eat Euphrates softshell turtles (Rafetus euphraticus), said the head of the Khuzestan Environmental Protection Department. The Euphrates softshell turtle is a species of softshell turtle which is found in the basin of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers in Iraq, Syria, Turkey, the Khuzestan Province of Iran and threaten by waterway pollution and habitat destruction. The Chinese eat turtles-especially soft-shell and snapper species-and use the animals' parts in traditional medicines that are said to boost everything from the immune system to sexual prowess.

Link to this web article online (English)


3. Boca Raton, Florida, USA: Loggerhead turtle rescued with hook in throat and cracked shell has surgery.

SOURCE: – DATE: 6th February 2014

A 100lb (~45kg) loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caratta) called “Phoenix” was rescued last week and brought to the Gumbo Limbo Nature Center in Boca Raton, Florida. Ryan Butts, the Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Coordinator at the Gumbo Limbo Nature Centre saw the turtle come in. "These turtles always get X-rays as soon as they come in, and little did we know what we were going to find is this 3 and a half inch (8.9 cm) stainless steel fishing hook. We realized Phoenix's problems were much larger than just a boat strike," Butts said. The hook was lodged so deeply, the animal would not have survived if it was not removed. The injured turtle was brought to the Palm Beach Zoo to perform a tense hour-long surgery to remove the hook. Phoenix is recovering nicely and will be released back into the wild in a few months when her wounds are healed.

Link to this web article online (English)


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