Thursday, December 07, 2006

Vietnam protects sea turtles by satellite

09:51' 21/11/2006 (GMT+7)
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VietNamNet Bridge - Three blue turtles on Con Dao Island have been affixed with special equipment which can send signals to satellites, which can help scientists follow the movements of the turtles.

“After one month, the equipment still works well. Watching the movements of the turtles by satellite has exceeded our expectations,” said Le Xuan Ai, Director of the Con Dao National Park.

The park is the first place in Vietnam keeping track of wild animals by satellite.

Con Dao is considered the most important place for sea turtles to lay eggs in Vietnam. Following turtles by satellite will provide significant information to managers and preservers to protect this kind of animal.

For the past ten years, sea turtles have been protected on Con Dao Island and tens of thousands of baby turtles are set free annually.

The programme to protect the egg laying sites of sea turtles on Con Dao Island has been quite successful, but many turtles still die when they come to the egg delivery sites because of being caught in nets, etc.

Following sea turtles by satellite will be combined with a master plan to protect the Con Dao sea area and coastal area under a project of the United Nations Development Fund (UNDP), sponsored by the Global Environment Fund and the Danish International Development Agency (Danida).

An education programme on sea turtle protection will be carried out at schools on Con Dao island, including a contest to name and keep track of sea turtles.

Kieu Minh



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