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Turtle Management on Mahe, Praslin and La Digue -- Marine Conservation Society, Seychelles

Project: Turtle Management on Mahe, Praslin and La Digue -- Marine Conservation Society, Seychelles 
Country: Seychelles 
Organisation / Address: Marine Conservation Society, Seychelles
Po Box 1299,
Telephone: +248 261511 
Fax: +248 261511 
E-mail address: info@mcss.sc 
Alternate email address:  
Web site address: www.mcss.sc 
Location(s) of main activity: Seychelles 
Project Summary: This project, launched by the Marine Conservation Society Seychelles (MCSS) in February 2004, focuses on the turtle rookeries on the three main islands of Mahe, Praslin and La Digue. Once these were the largest rookeries in the Central Seychelles but now they are in serious decline, despite enjoying full protection under the law since 1994.

The causes behind this trend are complex and include illegal poaching, unintentional fishery by-catch and the ongoing impact of historical exploitation. However, currently the main factor is probably the increased level of human activity and development on and adjacent to the nesting beaches.

Despite this there are still various beaches on the three islands that continue to harbour nesting turtles. This project aims to target priority beaches for management intervention which offer the best potential to maintain turtle populations. Marine turtles have historically made a significant contribution to the cultural and economic development of Seychelles and the Seychellois people, now it is our turn to come to their assistance before it is too late.

The only way that populations of nesting turtle can be maintained on the Mahe, Praslin and la Digue is if there is popular support for their conservation. The MCSS has therefore launched a public appeal in order to raise funds to start up and maintain projects on identified priority beaches. These projects will aim to work with the local communities and organisations in the vicinity of these significant turtle rookeries.

The project will investigate and refine methods for increasing nesting success on these beaches with the goal of maintaining them for the future educational, scientific and cultural benefit of Seychellois and as a contribution to the preservation of Seychelles natural heritage.

Methods of turtle management have proven successful on smaller islands, the challenge now is to adapt these to the developed islands in an attempt to preserve the remaining key areas. With support from the private sector, private individuals and the public in general, rookeries can be maintained on the developed islands for the benefit of future generations of Seychellois. 
Project Started: February 2004
Project Ended:
Reports / Information material: Torti de Mer, the quarterly newsletter on MCSS turtle conservation projects and other turtle projects in Seychelles, published by MCSS

Marine Conservation news, the Biannual newsletter on MCSS marine conservation projects and other projects in Seychelles, published by MCSS.

Integrated Approach to Turtle Management: Poster presentation by MCSS to Atmosphere, Ecology, Ocean Dynamics in the Western Indian Ocean, for the Royal Society, London, January 2004.

Talma, E.S. (2005) 2004-05 Turtle Nesting Season. Marine Conservation Society Seychelles. Unpublished technical report, 25 pages.

Talma, E.S. (2006) 2005-06 Turtle Nesting Season. Marine Conservation Society Seychelles. Unpublished technical report, 23 pages.

Talma, E.S. (2006) Assessment of turtle nesting activity on Pezula “Annonyme” Island. Unpublished technical report, 8 pages.

Talma, E.S. (2007) Report on Turtle Nesting Activity observed on Pezula “Anonyme” Island during the 2006-07 Nesting Season. Unpublished technical report, 15 pages.

Talma, E.S. (2007) Report on Turtle Nesting Activity recorded by MCSS and Banyan Tree Resort in the South of Mahe during the 2006-07 Season. Unpublished technical report, 37 pages.

Talma, E.S. (2007) Report on Turtle Nesting Activity observed by Constance Lemuria Resort on Praslin Island during the 2006-07 Nesting Season. Unpublished technical report, 16 pages.

Hutchinson, A., Hutchinson, B.J. and Koenig, K. (2007) The Global Hawksbill Nesting Map. In Volume III: State of the World’s Sea Turtles, 46 pages. Data source (Seychelles): record no. 97 – Talma, E.

Turtle Fund Brochure designed and produced by MCSS 
Planned activities: Please see Project Description document  
Collaborators: Banyan Tree Resort Seychelles, Chalet D’Anse Forbans, Maia Resort Seychelles, Global Vision International, Constance Lemuria Resort, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, Pezula Resort Hotel and Spa, Xanadu Marcel and Patricia Mathiot, David Deny 
Budget available:  
Current Sponsors: Banyan Tree Green Imperative Fund, Chalet D’Anse Forbans, Constance Lemuria Resort 
Past Sponsors: British Foreign and Commonwealth Office; Banyan Tree Green Imperative Fund; Environmental Trust Fund of Seychelles; AirTel Communications Seychelles Pty Ltd; Islands Development Company Ltd; Underwater Centre Seychelles (Ltd); Indian Ocean Explorer Cruises Ltd; Sam’s Pizzeria; Helicopter Seychelles; Thrifty Car Hire 
Information contributed by: Elke Talma and David Rowat, MCSS 
Info last updated: 17 March 2008 
Additional text/image: P0221.doc

UNEP © IOSEA Marine Turtle MoU Secretariat, c/o UNEP Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific,
United Nations Building, Rajdamnern Nok Avenue, Bangkok, 10200, Thailand
Tel: + (662) 288 1471 ; Fax: + (662) 288 3041 / 288 1029; E-mail: IOSEA Secretariat
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