IOSEA e-News for July 2011 (

Satellite-tracking of hawksbill turtles in the Gulf

Photo c/o EWS-WWFIn 2010, Emirates Wildlife Society - World Wide Fund for Nature (EWS-WWF) launched the Marine Turtle Conservation Project, a 3-year research project that uses satellite tracking technology to monitor Hawksbill turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata) in the region.

During its three years, the Marine Turtle Conservation Project aims to track up to 75 post-nesting Hawksbill turtles in four countries within the Gulf (United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar, Iran) in order to identify migration patterns and key foraging grounds. Data and information resulting from the project will be shared with relevant authorities and stakeholders to contribute to the development of regional marine turtle conservation policies. More »

Counting tracks and satellite tracking of Oman’s Loggerheads

For the fourth year running, the Environment Society of Oman (ESO) and Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs has embarked on seasonal monitoring of one of the worlds largest loggerhead turtle nesting rookeries, found on Masirah island in the Sultanate of Oman.

Financed from the United States' Marine Turtle Conservation Fund and supported by NOAA, the objective is to evaluate how many times each turtle is nesting during the season. This ‘nesting frequency’ information together with daily track counts on beaches will provide necessary data to estimate the population size of females visiting the islands’ 80km of nesting beaches each year. More »

From La Réunion: The ocean is not a desert

One morning in May, the lifeguard of Boucan Canot, a popular beach on Reunion Island, discovered a young green turtle close to shore. When he approached the animal, he discovered that it was lifeless. He thus notified the team of the care centre of Kelonia, who came and noted the death of the turtle, which did not present external injuries.

The autopsy was realised at Kelonia in order to determine the causes of the death. Photos of the head profiles were also taken to see if the individual had already been observed by divers and recorded in the database. Sadly, it turned out that this young turtle had been observed at Cap La Houssaye in January 2010 by a snorkeller. The head profiles were taken at the time and recorded on the database under the name of Kaena. More »


It has been several years since the largest country in the IOSEA region, Australia, has been the object of a Profile of the Month. So we’re grateful to David Waayers for having provided a brief overview this month of marine turtle research in the state of Western Australia. Thanks also to Col Limpus who has helped us to incorporate the complete Australian tag series in the Flipper Tag database, which now covers some 22 countries around the Indian Ocean.

Mark these dates: The Secretariat is on the verge of announcing the convening of the Sixth Meeting of IOSEA Signatory States, in Bangkok, from 6-9 December 2011. This important gathering of member States and partner organisations is made possible by a grant from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and a pledge from France’s Ministry of Ecology (MEDDLT). Formal letters of invitation and a provisional agenda, currently under consultation with the IOSEA Advisory Committee, will be circulated shortly. IOSEA marks its tenth anniversary later in the year, and we expect this years’ meeting to be both informative and memorable.

An appeal to IOSEA Signatory States for voluntary contributions has been met with a very positive response in recent weeks, with additional contributions and firm pledges received from Australia (DSEWPT), the United Kingdom (Defra), and the United States (State Department and NOAA). The Secretariat expresses its appreciation for this timely show of support, which will help to sustain the work of IOSEA into next year, and calls on other members to follow suit in the coming weeks.

Lastly, the news Headlines for June were many and varied. Stories from India were especially plentiful, focussing on increased poaching and decreased nesting in some areas, light pollution, alternative livelihoods for fishermen, and private sector collaboration. From Australia, concerns were raised about unusually high numbers of turtle strandings in Queensland; while a report from the Philippines highlighted a major confiscation of stuffed turtles and black coral. The prospect of new sanctuaries being gazetted to conserve hawkbill turtles in the Malaysian state of Malacca was also noteworthy.

No month would be complete without several articles on satellite tracking projects (e.g. in Australia, India, and UAE) and some interesting cases of rehabilitated turtles released into the sea. Enjoy reading these and other headlines in the links below.

MONTHLY ROUND-UP: What you may have missed in June
"Hover" for summaries & "Click" to view each story

Australia: ‘Shocking case’: plastic kills turtle 30 Jun

KWS arrest fishermen for killing prized green turtle 30 Jun

India: Poaching of turtle nests rampant 29 Jun

Malaysia: WWF lauds Malacca’s plan for hawksbills 29 Jun

Australia: Townsville turtle strandings soar 27 Jun

India: Conservation of Olive Ridleys turns turtle 26 Jun

India: Rescued Olive Ridley finds home in SGNP 25 Jun

Malaysia: More turtle nesting sites 25 Jun

Various sectors unite for the plight of Tonga’s turtles 23 Jun

UAE: Go turtle go 22 Jun

Sick turtles wash up on north Queensland beach 22 Jun

Oceans’ decline outpaces predictions, report says 21 Jun

Goa to illuminate beaches but spare turtle habitats 21 Jun

Australia: Leatherback Turtle found 21 Jun

Green sea turtle becomes a tracking device in Port Stephens 20 Jun

Philippines: Green turtle rescued and released 20 Jun

India: Turn turtle-friendly 17 Jun

India: Fishermen discuss alternative livelihoods 17 Jun

Fed may remove honu from “threatened” list 17 Jun

UAE: Turtles will taste freedom Thursday 16 Jun

Fisheries Department to monitor movement of turtles 16 Jun

Chinese shipwreck could pose threat to Olive Ridley turtles 16 Jun

India: Ridleys! Believe it or not 16 Jun

TIRN: "New Chevron refineries destroying endangered species" 16 Jun

New research may change future for Hawaiian green turtle 14 Jun

India: Let’s be green 13 Jun

Scientists hope to restore Abu Dhabi’s coral reefs 12 Jun

UAE: Turtle recall as rescued reptiles return to the sea 9 Jun

Waste plastic to become artificial reefs Praseeda Nair 9 Jun

World’s best turtle habitat in Gorontalo threatened 8 Jun

Taiwan: Penghu vet champions cause of sea turtles 8 Jun

Fiji: A turtle’s best friend 8 Jun

90,000 Turtle eggs collected for hatching, breeding 8 Jun

Map reveals nesting sites of the world’s green turtles 8 Jun

Philippines: Pawikan set free 7 Jun

Act now to reduce impact of climate change 7 Jun

Will environmentalists have the last laugh this time? 6 Jun

Great Gulf Turtle Race gets under way in Abu Dhabi 6 Jun

A turtle’s odyssey: Sheela swims to Indonesia 6 Jun

Plastic greatest danger for marine turtles 6 Jun

Chennnai hatches success story of Olive Ridleys 5 Jun

India: When the turtles come ashore 5 Jun

Australia: Meet the beach babies 5 Jun

WWF-Philippines and Smart launch ‘Text-to-Donate’ 3 Jun

Philippines files charges over smuggled corals 3 Jun

UNDP brings Gulf of Mannar coral reef out of danger 3 Jun

Green sea turtle’s 2600km ocean odyssey 2 Jun

Thailand: Slow action to save coral reefs blasted 2 Jun

Saving Egypt’s bountiful marine life 2 Jun

US Agency says coral reef destruction is slowing this year 2 Jun

CNMI: Second green sea turtle, Magas, gets satellite tag 1 Jun

USFWS announces $13.6M in Species Conservation Grants 1 Jun


for July 2011


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