Israeli conservationists work to restore endangered turtles

September 29, 2019 by JNS
Read on for article

The Israeli Sea Turtle Rescue Centre released 60 baby turtles into the Mediterranean Sea in Israel this week as part of a conservation program aimed at helping the population of green turtles, which are endangered worldwide.

A sea turtle Credit: Flickr.

Green turtles are threatened by hunting, intrusion by humans on the beaches where they nest and pollution of their feeding grounds offshore, among other things. Only about 20 female green turtles nest along the Israeli Mediterranean coast during a breeding season that typically lasts from May until August, according to the rescue centre.

In 2002, the rescue centre began a unique conservation program by recruiting turtles for breeding to help populate the sea with their offspring, according to Reuters.

The group of turtles began to reach sexual maturity a few years ago, and this year began breeding, with about 200 babies expected to hatch by the end of the season.

Roderic Mast, president of the Oceanic Society and co-chair of the IUCN-SSC Marine Turtle Specialist Group, said it was critical to their chances of survival to release the hatchlings into the sea immediately.

“In terms of conservation, nothing is more important than the protection of turtles, and their habitats and behaviours in the wild,” said Mast.

The centre’s manager, Yaniv Levi noted that “we’re only at the beginning. It’s the first year, and we expect that in the coming years we will be able to spawn 1,000 hatchlings a year.”

JNS

Speak Your Mind

Comments received without a full name will not be considered
Email addresses are NEVER published! All comments are moderated. J-Wire will publish considered comments by people who provide a real name and email address. Comments that are abusive, rude, defamatory or which contain offensive language will not be published


    Rules on posting comments