Save the Turtles

Animal lovers may prefer to look away now.

I want to protest but I don’t know who to, nor how.

The Pearl Cays are the breeding habitat for at least 3 kinds of sea turtle including the endangered green-backed and critically endangered hawksbill turtles.
The Wildlife Conservation Society attempts to protect their environment – with some success as the figures for last year’s breeding season (June to November) show.

We thought we had seen turtles being butchered nearby every morning. Then as I was taking a photo of a house Mr George Fox approached me. After the usual courtesies he suggested I should walk down the side of the building to photograph the green backed turtles there –  to show people what is happening.
He explained that taking the turtles is illegal but not enforced. But also said the the Wildlife Conservation Society is having some success and, at least, the turtle eggs are no longer being stolen for food.



The Vianica website has more information about the problems and protection of sites. In summary it is difficult to discourage communities for whom taking turtles for food forms part of their cultural background particularly when they are living in poverty and can make use of turtle meat for both food and to increase their income.

For an interesting read see:

I’m not sure that makes me feel much better.

4 thoughts on “Save the Turtles

  1. Jan & Alan
    Sadly unless such poverty is addressed it will remain a battle for survival : locals vs turtles … A struggle to alter generations of common actions against turtles
    😞 Jo

  2. Ah – the eternal dilemma. When you think of the animals we used to butcher in centuries past, do we have the right now, because we’re more ‘enlightened’, to tell others not to? As usual, I have my padded seat up here on the fence, from which I can see both sides of the argument …..
    Enjoying the blogs as always – super photos and thoughtful comments.

  3. Cultural behaviours are the hardest to change. There are no white rhinos left in South Africa anymore – indeed I don’t how many in Africa generally. The horns they were slaughtered for brought in a lot of money from sales to ‘medicine men’ etc.

    I agree with Mike – think of all the elephants hunted in Africa and India for ivory – to be transported to the UK and made into fans, ornaments etc in times past. At least, albeit sad, the turtles are seen as food and not trinkets.

    Loved your picture of the accommodation over the water – how wonderful to be able to buy fresh prawns etc from passing boats!


  4. Thank you for the wise comments. Indeed British history is far from glorious! And it is certainly different to hunt animals for food rather than as trophies. It’s also encouraging that conservation is a priority within some parts the community. It’s still sad to see them piled up on the shore.

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