Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Discovery of sea turtle’s nest lifts hope of conservationists

Discovery of sea turtle’s nest lifts hope of conservationists

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A sea turtle being released by fishermen in Koh Sdach commune of Koh Kong province’s Kirisakor district in February of this year. FB

Discovery of sea turtle’s nest lifts hope of conservationists

Researchers from the Fisheries Administration (FiA) – and the Coastal and Marine Conservation team at Fauna & Flora International Cambodia Programme (FFI-Cambodia) – expressed joy and pride after they recently discovered a nest of endangered sea turtles on one of the Kingdom’s islands.

Officials said the sea turtle (superfamily Chelonioidea) was previously thought to have gone extinct in the past decade.

Ouk Vibol, director of the FiA’s fisheries conservation department, said that since records began in 2001, researchers from his department and FFI-Cambodia had discovered a total of 140 sea turtles, of which 43 were Hawksbill and 90 Green.

He said the turtles were released back into the sea after they were painted with identifying marks – with some of them chipped with location beacons so their movements could be monitored.

According to a report seen by The Post on May 30, the latest colony was found in late March, following their disappearance in the last decade. A total of 93 eggs were found and 36 had hatched.

According to Vibol, there are five species of sea turtle: Hawksbill, Green, Loggerhead, Leatherback and Olive Ridley.

He said the location where these sea turtles were found had been developed ahead of a resort being built and had been extensively fished by commercial fishermen.

“The recent discovery of these nests gives us hope for our sea turtle conservation programme and increases the possibility that we may find other nests in the near future,” Vibol said.

“Sea turtles are an important fishery resource and endangered species, as stated in a sub-decree issued in 2009. The International Union for Conservation of Nature [IUCN] lists sea turtles as a species under threat, especially the Hawksbill.

“All species of sea turtle are listed in the appendix of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species which totally bans their trade,” he said, adding the government had ordered fishermen to release them back to their habitat immediately, should they catch one.

Vibol said his department, the coastal community near the nests and FFI-Cambodia are taking care of the newly discovered eggs and releasing the hatchlings to ensure their numbers increase.

Phel Ra, a member of a fishing community on Koh Rong in Preah Sihanouk province, said his community had become role models in conserving marine resources, including sea turtles.

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor lifetime pass, special Siem Reap travel offers planned

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to introduce a convenient, single lifetime pass for foreign travellers to visit Angkor Archaeological Park and potentially other areas. The move is designed to stimulate tourism to the culturally rich province of Siem Reap as the start of the “Visit

  • Ice cream, noodles flagged over carcinogen

    The General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia (GDCE) has identified three types of instant noodles and ice cream trademarks originating from Thailand, Vietnam and France that are suspected to contain ethylene oxide, which poses a cancer risk to consumers. The general department has

  • Exclusive interview with Josep Borrell Fontelles, High Representative of the EU

    CAMBODIA is hosting the 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings this week with top officials from the US, China, and Russia and other countries in the region slated to attend and to meet with face-to-face with their counterparts on the sidelines. In

  • Rise in Thai air routes to Siem Reap fuels travel hopes

    Local tourism industry players are eager for regional airline Bangkok Airways Pcl’s resumption of direct flight services between the Thai capital and Siem Reap town on August 1 – home of Cambodia’s awe-inspiring Angkor Archaeological Park – which is expected to boost the growth rate of

  • ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ meet commences, Taiwan issue possibly on table

    The 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and related meetings hosted by Cambodia kicks off in Phnom Penh on August 3, with progress, challenges, and the way forward for the ASEAN Community-building on the table. Issues on Taiwan, sparked by the visit of US House Speaker

  • Recap of this year’s ASEAN FM meet and look ahead

    This year’s edition of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) hosted by Cambodia comes against the backdrop of heightened global tensions and increasing rivalry between major powers that have been compared to the animosity of the Cold War era. The following is The Post’