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Despite growing global recognition of the Asian turtle crisis in the late 1990’s, efforts to protect Asia’s turtles have been slow to move forward. Weak enforcement, low awareness, traditional attitudes towards turtles and other wildlife, too few national experts or people willing to invest the time and energy into conserving turtles, and a host of other factors pose significant obstacles to progress. Moreover, loss of habitat resulting from forest destruction leave surviving wild populations under intense pressure form hunters and collectors.

Asia’s turtles are in trouble. However it is not too late to take decisive action that will help secure populations of the most critically endangered turtle species in the wild though this difficult period as nations develop within the region. If turtles remain a part of the local landscape, we must focus investment in building capacity and leadership within range states, helping states develop a strong national voice on behalf of turtles, and ensuring that our invested resources generate meaningful results in our efforts to secure a future for the regions turtles in crisis.

Turtles in a Chinese market
Although turtles have survived in nature for more than 250 million years, one might question whether turtles can adapt to a world dominated by humans.

Geoemyda spengleri
There are about 90 species of tortoises and freshwater turtles native to the south Asia region.

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