Sea turtle biologists in the Gulf of California in northwest Mexico are having continued success with efforts to monitor and restore sea turtle populations in the region, according to DSN’s field correspondent Wallace J Nichols. Three critically endangered hawksbill turtles Eretmochelys imbricata were tagged with satellite transmitters for the first time ever in this part of the world.
The satellite tags will provide new and valuable information about sea turtle movements and habitat use. The information should aid in their management and protection. J’s blog carries the full press release with all the details.
The hawksbill turtle was once heavily exploited for its beautiful shell, called bekko in Japanese, but has since been listed in the Convention for International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). The legal hawksbill shell trade ended when Japan agreed to stop importing shell in 1993, but a significant illegal trade continues. Cuba petitioned to downgrade the threatened status of the turtle in 1997, but this was defeated by vote at 10th Conference of the Parties. Scientists are hopeful that the species will recover.
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