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The Asian Turtle Conservation Network is a non-profit consortium of people, projects and institutions based within the Asia region and actively working to

Evidence suggests that Asia’s turtles are being systematically extirpated from nature to feed the insatiable demand from export markets. According to some estimates, as many as 15 million turtles are traded annually in the region, most of these ending up in China where the country’s rapidly developing economy has generated demand for expensive foods and traditional medicines made from turtles. Of an estimated 90 species that are native to the region, more than 50% are listed as "Critically Endangered" or "Endangered" on the IUCN Red List of threatened species. Read More...

The Asian Turtle Conservation Network (ATCN) was established in 2003, to help develop and promote turtle conservation efforts in Asia, and providing a means to share information and improve communication amongst those of us working with turtles in the region.

Thanks for visiting us and please feel free to give your comments or ideas.

ATCNetwork@fpt.vn

Turtle News

Local forest turtle getting extinct
The Philippine Forest Turtle (Siebenrockiella leytensis), commonly found in Palawan, is now among the 25 endangered tortoises and freshwater turtles in the world, with an extremely high risk of getting extinct, international experts said.

Turtle Conservation Fund (TCF)

Request for proposals (March 23, 2011)
The Turtle Conservation Fund (TCF) administers a turtle conservation and research grants program.

TRAFFIC website
Too little done to address trade threat to Asia’s tortoises and freshwater turtles (Posted February 28, 2011)
Malaysian Giant Turtle Orlitia borneensis, one of the largest freshwater turtles in the world is found only in Peninsular Malaysia, Borneo and Sumatra, and listed as Critically Endangered.

Focus Taiwan
Taiwan to help build transitional refuge for turtles in Myanmar (Posted February 28, 2011)
Taiwan has donated US$10,000 to help set up a halfway house for Burmese star tortoises in Myanmar that will promote the conservation of the endangered species, the Taipei Zoo said Monday.

Turtle Conservation Fund (TCF)
Priority Species List (February 28, 2011)
Species included in this list are Critically Endangered (CR) or proposed as CR (by IUCN Red Listing Workshops).  Listed exceptions include Elusor macrurus (Mary River Turtle) (Endangered), and Terrapene coahuila (Coahuilan Box Turtle) (Endangered).

Tuoi Tre
Hanoi sets up committee to save legendary turtle (Posted February 18, 2011)
An Indonesian man was arrested at the airport in Bangkok, Thailand for trying to smuggle so many rare animals it sounds like he had a small zoo stuffed in his luggage.

Turtle Survival Alliance
Request for proposals (February 15, 2011)
The TSA provides grants for research and conservation action that support specific and selected tortoise and freshwater turtle projects and priority programs. 

AOL Travel
Thais Bust Man With Rare Animals at Airport (Posted February 11, 2011)
An Indonesian man was arrested at the airport in Bangkok, Thailand for trying to smuggle so many rare animals it sounds like he had a small zoo stuffed in his luggage.

Deccan Herald
UK foils plot to smuggle rare Indian Star Tortoises (Posted February 10, 2011)
Britain's immigration officials have foiled a plan to smuggle eight live Indian Star Tortoises to Manchester, official sources here said.

Zoo and Aquarium Visitor.com
Singapore Zoo Successfully Breeds Rare Giant River Terrapins
Singapore - Only a handful of these elusive and rare giant river terrapins are known to be left in their native homeland Cambodia – but the Singapore Zoo has successfully bred four of them, with more expected to join the family of eight in the months to come.

Asian Turtle Program
Interview surveys for endangered tortoise and freshwater turtles in the central highlands of Vietnam
High species diversity and endemism are associated with the range of climatic conditions and habitat found in the annamite mountain range of the central highlands in Vietnam. Unsurprisingly this area is an exciting prospect for conducting tortoise and freshwater turtles surveys and is considered a priority for the Asian Turtle Program (ATP) of Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.

Asian Turtle Program
Recent concerns raised about the health of the Hoan Kiem Turtle in Hanoi’s famous lake.
The Hoan Kiem Turtle in Hanoi’s central Hoan Kiem Lake is famous in Vietnam due to the 16th century legend that relates to this species. Known as Swinhoe’s Softshell Turtle (Rafetus swinhoei) the species is critically endangered due to a combination of habitat loss and illegal hunting and trade.

US Department of Justice
Japanese nationals arrested on charges of smuggling turtles and tortoises from Japan into the United States
LOS ANGELES –Two Japanese nationals have been arrested on federal animal smuggling charges at Los Angeles International Airport after they allegedly brought into the United States approximately 55 live turtles and tortoises that were concealed in snack food boxes discovered in a suitcase.

Proceedings of the first Vietnamese national symposium on reptiles and amphibians
Genetic variability of the critically endangered softshell turtle Rafetus swinhoei: (November 13, 2010)
A paper by Le and Pritchard announcing preliminary results on genetic studies of Rafetus swinhoei in Vietnam

Asian Turtle Program
New Awareness Poster for Rafetus swinhoei (October 22, 2010)
The Asian Turtle Program released a new poster aimed at raising awareness about Rafetus swinhoei and urging the public to report any sightings of large soft-shell turtles in the wild.

Asian Turtle Program
New Poster Highlights Need to Conserve Vietnamese pond turtle Mauremys annamensis (October 22, 2010)
An announcement for the release of a new poster focused on protection of the Vietnamese pond turtle (Mauremys annamensis).

TSA Magazine
WCS/TSA Partnership provides renewed hope for Batagur in Indochina (August 2010)
A feature article in TSA magazine on efforts to conserve Batagur affinis in Cambodia.

 TSA magazine
Training detection dogs (August 2010)
A feature article from TSA magazine on a project in Vietnam involving training of dogs to assist in locating turtles during field surveys.

TSA magazine
First “Turtle Cup” Soccer Match for Dong Mo Lake Turtle (August 2010)
A feature article from TSA magazine on new creative community activities aimed at enhancing protection of the world’s last known wild Rafetus swinhoei.

Analisa Daily
Tracing the footsteps of Batagur borneoensis in Pusong Cium, Sumatra (October 3, 2010)
A translation of a news article that appeared October 3 in northern Sumatra’s most widely circulated newspaper about Batagur borneoensis in Sumatra

Thanh Nien
NGO raids turtle show dedicated to Thang Long anniversary (October 1, 2010)
A news article about a show advertising 1000 turtles on display in Hanoi to celebrate the 1000 year birthday of the city.  At the show, ENV inspectors discovered hundreds of turtles, including many rare and endangered species that should not have been in captivity.

Turtle Conservation Fund (TCF)
TCF Funds Five Projects in Asia (Posted October 1, 2010)
The May 2010 round of proposals to TCF resulted in the funding of five projects focused on Asian turtles. 

Turtle Conservation Fund (TCF)
Next round of funding announced (September 26, 2010)
The TCF has announced another round of funding available for projects focused on conservation of the world’s most critically endangered species.  The deadline for grant applications is November 1, 2010

Thanhnien
Asian giant soft-shell turtles teeter on the brink of extinction (September 24, 2010)
A news article on efforts to save the world’s last remaining Swinhoei’s soft-shell turtles, with four surviving animals known.

Thanhnien
Hoan Kiem’s endangered deity (September 17, 2010)
A news article on Rafetus swinhoei following the observation of a fishing hook in the carapace of the famous Hoan Kiem turtle caused alarm within the community

Conservation International
Shellshock: Catastrophic decline in world’s freshwater turtles (September 10, 2010)
A press release by CI on the decline of freshwater turtles globally and highlighting the top ten most critically endangered speices, seven of which are Asian species.

BBC
Freshwater turtles face bleak future (September 10, 2010)

An article on how the world’s approximately 220 freshwater turtle species are threatened by exploitation and consumption as food or collection as pets

Turtle Survival Alliance
Confiscated Temple turtles to be transfered to US (August 30, 2010)
A brief news summary from TSA on the planned transfer of 50 Heosemys annandalii that were confiscated in February 2010 in Hong Kong to long-term placement facilities in the USA. 

Big-headed Turtles Returned to Nature in Myanmar (August 5, 2010)
35 big-headed turtles were released in at a wildlife sanctuary in Myanmar following their confiscation in July. 

TRAFFIC
Hundreds of tortoises seized in Malaysia (July 16, 2010)

A TRAFFIC story on the seizure of hundreds of tortoises from Madagascar seized from two suspects entering Malaysia. The tortoises included radiated and ploughshare tortoises.

The Last Tortoise (June 22, 2010)
A new book by University of Southern California biologist Craig Stanford highlights the decline of tortoises and freshwater turtles resulting from hunting and trade, mainly to feed the demand from Chinese consumers.

Turtle Survival Alliance
Back in China: Efforts to Breed Rafetus swinhoei (June 12, 2010)
A quick update by TSA on efforts to breed the only known captive pair of Rafetus swinhoei at Suzhou Zoo in China.

The Philippine Star
Two arrested for killing soft-shell (June 2, 2010)
A news article about the arrest of a cook and restaurant manager that were reportedly selling soft-shell turtles in specialty dishes at their restaurant in Pasay City. 

VTV
Protecting The Dong Mo Rafetus (June 1, 2010)
A link to a Vietnamese language news segment on protecting Rafetus swinhoei in Dong Mo Lake where the last known wild Rafetus swinhoei persists.  Great Rafetus shots and visuals of the lake habitat.
LINK to film segment: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5A6IFOyXog

Wildlife Alliance
Truck intercepted with load of 126 endangered turtles (May 31, 2010)
A press release from Wildlife Alliance on the seizure of 804kg of Heosemys annandalii on a truck in Cambodia’s Kendal province.  Authorities believe that the turtles came from Thailand and were passing through Cambodia to Vietnam.

USFWS
A photographic guide to star tortoises (May 20, 2010)
An identification guide for star tortoises produced by the US Fish and Wildlife Service in 2008. 


Painted terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) film  (May 1, 2010)
A brief film on efforts in the Sumatran province of Aceh (Indonesia) to protect the critically endangered painted terrapin, Batagur borneoensis.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4OkY4wSnQCo

Turtle Survival Alliance
Chambal Conservation Center Opens in India (April 22, 2010)
A new visitor interpretation center in India has opened at the National Chambal River Sanctuary aimed at promoting awareness amongst visitors and members of local communities about turtles and other aquatic wildlife. 

VietnamNet Bridge
Vietnam’s Hoan Kiem Turtles on Brink of Extinction (April 15, 2010)
An article about the world’s last known wild Rafetus swinhoei in Dong Mo Lake

New ID guide and film to strengthen enforcement and combat tortoise and freshwater turtle trade in Vietnam
Education for Nature – Vietnam (ENV) has released a new set of resources intended to strengthen efforts by frontline law enforcement officers to combat illegal trade of tortoises and freshwater turtles.
Turtle ID book (Vietnamese version)

Education for Nature - Vietnam
Asian Turtle Crisis Fact Sheet released (April 1, 2010)
ENV has produced a fact sheet to promote understanding and better protection for Vietnam’s tortoises and freshwater turtles, threatened by hunting and trade.

Education for Nature – Vietnam (ENV)
New Tortoise and Freshwater Turtle Identification Resource (March 31, 2010)

ENV and our partners from the Cuc Phuong Turtle Conservation Center and the Asian Turtle Program have produced an electronic identification guide for law enforcement officers to the tortoises and freshwater turtles of Vietnam.  The resource, updated annually, will be distributed to frontline wildlife protection officers throughout Vietnam.

Turtle Survival Alliance
Third Time’s A Charm (March 27, 2010)
A brief update from the TSA on this year’s plans to breed Rafetus swinhoei at Suzhou Zoo in China.

Turtle Conservation Fund
TCF Call for proposals (March 17, 2010)
TCF announced a call for proposals for the next round of funding. The proposal deadline is May 1, 2010. See the attachment for links and details.

Education for Natuure – Vietnam (ENV)
New “Wanted” poster released by ENV  (March 14, 2010)
ENV and the Asian Turtle Program have released a new poster urging the public to report turtle hunters and traders through ENV’s National Toll-free Wildlife Crime Hotline. 

Asian Turtle Program
Updated field record form (March 12, 2010)
The ATP has produced an updated version of the standard field record report form for tortoises and freshwater turtles. Feel free to use the form, and if you wish to submit your records to the regional database, please feel free to do so by emailing them to asianturtleprogram@gmail.com.

Chelonian Interpretation Center Opens (March 10, 2010)
Cuc Phuong National Park opened the doors to the region’s first visitor interpretation center focused exclusively on the conservation and protection of tortoises and freshwater turtles.

Asian Turtle Program
Close call for World's Last Rafetus in the Wild (March 2010)
A summary of events leading up to the successful rescue of the last known living Rafetus swinhoei in the wild, captured by fishermen in a stream west of Hanoi in November 2008.

Turtle Conservation Fund
Seven Asian Turtle Proposals Funded (March 9, 2010)
The November 2009 funding cycle resulted in seven proposals focused on Asian turtle species receiving funding from TCF and the Shellshock campaign.  See the list of proposals funded.

ASEAN WEN
Critically endangered tortoises seized in Bangkok (February 18, 2010)
A press release from ASEAN WEN on a seizure of 58 live radiated tortoises found in the suitcase of a passenger traveling from Bangkok to the Philippines.

Asian Turtle Program
Environmental Education Course Focuses on Turtles (February 2010)
ENV carried out a weeklong training course for field staff of the Asian Turtle Program in preparation for their carrying out environmental education activities in schools and villages at two priority turtle conservation sites.

Asian Turtle Program
First National Workshop on Reptiles and Amphibians (Posted January 27, 2010)
A brief summary on a Vietnam’s first national workshop focused on science and conservation of reptiles and amphibians. 

YouTube
The Asian Turtle Crisis (Posted January 1, 2010)
A film on the Asian Turtle Crisis featuring Chris Banks of the Melbourne Zoo speaking on the issue
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bwo9_dagpwo

Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA)
Milestone for the Burmese roofed turtle recovery program (December 5 2009)
A news update from TSA on the Burmese roofed turtle (Batagur trivittata) conservation breeding program at the Yadadabon Zoo in Mandalay.

Phnom Penh Post
Tonnes of reptiles seized at border (December 4, 2009)
Almost two tons of turtles and snakes were seized in Kandal province, Cambodia.  The turtles reportedly included elongated tortoises (Indotestudo elongata), and the shipment was to be smuggled across the border into Vietnam. 

Center for Disease Control – US Govt.
Human Trichinosis after Consumption of Soft-Shelled Turtles (Posted December 1, 2009)

A paper by Yi-Chun Lo et al. reporting on the outbreak of human trichinosis in Taiwan from eating soft-shell turtles. 

No News.com
Customs seizes turtles in Taiwan (Posted November 30, 2009)
A brief news story on the August seizure of 1,225 Cuora flavomarginata in Taiwan.  The turtles were in 50 crates falsely labeled and were reportedly destined for Hong Kong.

Marine turtle identification resource (Posted November 22, 2009)
An easy-to-use resource from Seaturtle.org for identification of the world’s eight marine turtle species.

Turtle Survival Alliance
Burmese roofed terrapin faces new threat (November 20, 2009)
A brief note from TSA on the threat posed by gold mining on Batagur trivittata habitat in Myanmar.

Turtle Survival Alliance
Batagur Project Update - Malaysia (date)
A brief news update from the TSA on efforts to conserve river terrapins (Batagur) on the Setiu River in the eastern state of Terengganu, Malaysia. Dr. Chan Eng reports 15.7% recapture rates for head-started turtles released into the river.  

ATCN
Keeled box turtle rescued through web monitoring (November 2, 2009)

A brief summary on the rescue of a keeled box turtle (Cuora mouhotii) after an advertisement offering the animal for sale was posted on a popular website. 

Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA)
Mission Philippines (Posted September 28, 2009)
A brief informal summary of the TSA mission to the Philippines where the team met with local partners working on the Philippine forest turtle, Siebenrockiella leytensis.

Turtle Survival Alliance – (Posted September 25, 2009)
Myanmar Workshop on Chelonian Conservation
A report on a workshop held in Myanmar in January 2009 focused on developing a species recovery plan for the Burmese roof turtle (Batagur trivittata) and assisting authorities in dealing with confiscated turtles. 

Turtle Conservation Fund
Call for Proposals (Posted September 20, 2009)
The Turtle Conservation Fund (TCF) is requesting proposals for the next round of TCF funding.  The deadline for proposals is November 1, 2009.

Zootaxa
New subspecies of the mangrove terrapin, Batagur affinis, described (Posted September 17, 2009)
A new paper in Zootaxa identifies populations of Batagri affinis living on the eastern Malay peninsula, Thailand, and Cambodia as a new subspecies, based on analysis of samples from Cambodian turtles. The subspecies is named Batagur affinis edwardmolli.

Taipei Times
Taipei Zoo Inks pact on rare tortoises  (September 16, 2009)
A news article about a new agreement between the Taipei Zoo and the US Behler Chelonian Center to transfer captive born Burmese star tortoises from Taipei Zoo back to a zoo (presumably the Mandalay Zoo) in Myanmar.

The Burmese star tortoise is endemic to Myanmar and is highly valued in the pet trade. 

Myanmar Times
Critically endangered turtle found in Rakhine State (September 14, 2009)
A second more in depth news article on a WCS survey team finding Arakan Forest Turtles (Heosemys depressa) in the wild for the first time.

Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA)
Rafetus barrier installed (September 11, 2009)
Another news update from the Suzhou Zoo breeding project where efforts are underway to breed the last two captive turtles of this species.  A new barrier will prevent visitors of the zoo from throwing trash into the ponds where the turtles reside.

Associated Press
Turtle thought to be extinct spotted in Myanmar (September 7, 2009)
Scientists have just recorded the capture of the Arakan Forest Turtle (Heosemys depressa) in western Myanmar for the first time, according to a news article and press release from WCS.

ATCN Note:  The story is not factually correct.  The species was never thought extinct and WCS and CI field times have recorded dozens in local trade prior to the “”discovery”.  However, the finding is interesting and the species is important.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
Call for proposals:  Asia Seed Grant Program Announcement (September 5, 2009)
Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and the Cleveland Zoological Society has announced the next round of grants under their Asia Seed Grant Program. The application deadline is coming up September 18, 2009. Grants range from $1000-3500 USD. See links included in this document.

ATCN
Cambodian law to protect most freshwater turtles (July 27, 2009)
A brief note on a new law in Cambodia that will extend protection to most freshwater turtle species there.

Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA)
Good news and bad news from China (July 17, 2009)
An update from the Rafetus swinhoei breeding project at Suzhou Zoo in China where the last two known remaining captive specimens of the species have been paired in hopes of producing another generation of turtles.

Cambodian Turtle Conservation Project
First Success in Head-starting Asian Giant Soft-shell Turtles (Pelochelys cantorii) in Cambodia (Posted June 2009)
A brief summary from last year’s head-starting program for giant soft-shells in Cambodia.  Great hatchling photos!

ATCN Note:  The ATCN was late posting this story which was received in early 2009.  Apologies to the excellent team in Cambodia working with this species.

ATCN – Posted June 28, 2009
Rafetus swinhoei publications
The ATCN bibliography has added three new entries for papers on Rafetus swinhoei.  All three papers in German with English abstracts.  One invalidates claims that the Hoan Kiem turtle is a new species, Rafetus leloii.  A second paper is on the discovery of a museum specimen in Austria, and the third is on the taxonomy of Rafetus.  See the links below:
Link 1:  Farkas et al. on the identity of Rafetus swinhoei
Link 2:  Farkas et al. invalidating the claim of Rafetus leloii
Link 3:  Farkas et al. regarding the discovery of a museum specimen in Austria

Asian Turtle Program – Posted June 16, 2009
Hong Kong students learn radio telemetry technique to track turtles
A brief summary of a training initiative for students from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology on radio tracking of terrestrial turtles at Cuc Phuong National Park.   

TSA - Posted June 5, 2009
Rafetus Eggs in China
The following report is taken from a communication that Gerald Kuchling provided from China today.

Guardian.co.uk – Posted May 23, 2009 (China)
Student activists try to save wildlife on China’s menu
A news article about a group of young Chinese activists called Asian Turtle Rehabilitation Project that are working to prevent consumers from eating turtles.  Check out the video link below too.
Video link:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/may/14/china-rare-wildlife-conservation

New Straits Times – May 22, 2009 (Malaysia)
Seitu terrapin centre needs more public help
A news article on the decline of nesting Batagur affinis along the Seitu River in eastern Malaysia, and the need for local fishermen to contribute more eggs to the conservation program.   

New Straits Times – May 22, 2009 (Malaysia)
Mating Game Their Last Hope
Another story on efforts in China to breed the last two known captive Rafetus swinhoei

Turtle Survival Alliance – Posted May 13, 2009
Second chance for the Yangtze giant soft-shell turtle?
A brief update from the TSA on this year’s efforts to breed Rafetus swiinhoei at the Suzhou Zoo, where two of the world’s only four known remaining turtles of this species can be found, and the ONLY pair. 

CWRCA – Posted May 9, 2009
Soft-shell turtle sacrificed on superstitious belief
A news brief by the Center for Wildlife Research and Conservation Action (CWRCA) in India about the sacrifice of turtles as part of religious belief.

Asian Turtle Program – Posted May 8, 2009
Training course to develop next generation of Vietnam’s turtle conservationists
A summary of the recent tortoise and freshwater turtle field skills training course that was carried out for 15 students and young professionals from universities throughout Vietnam in March.   

Asian Turtle Program – Posted May 7, 2009
Workshop brings Rafetus Dong Mo stakeholders together
A brief summary of a meeting held by the Asian Turtle Program with local stakeholders at the last remaining site where Swinhoei’s soft-shell turtle (Rafetus swinhoei) is known to survive in the wild.

Mongabay.com – May 4, 2009 (Philippines)
Will the illegal trade of the critically endangered Philippine forest turtle lead to its extinction?
An article from Endangered Species International (ESI) on monitoring of the Philippine forest turtle (Siebenrockiella leytensis) in Manilla markets.

The Star – April 26, 2009
Turtle smuggled under garlic
A news article reports on a seizure in Malaysia of king cobras and 814 Malayan box turtles (Cuora amboinensis) hidden in bags of garlic.  The turtles were reportedly later released. 

Asiatic Herpetological Research – Posted April 15, 2009
Observations on the influence of seasonality, lunar cycles, and weather conditions of freshwater turtle activity in Sarawak, East Malaysia (Borneo)
A paper by Jensen and Das published in 2008 resulting from a trapping study at two sites in eastern Sarawak.    

ATCN – Posted April 9, 2009
World’s Rarest Turtle, Rafetus swinhoei, on Film
Two news segments on Rafetus swinhoei can be found on the following links.  The first link is a Vietnamese news segment on the Rafetus swinhoei rescue in November 2008 west of Hanoi, Vietnam.  The second link is to a Nature film segment on the pairing of Rafetus at Suzhou Zoo in China in early 2008.
Vietnam: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49WQOQ8F5X0
Suzhou: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episodes/the-loneliest-animals/video-the-last-living-pair-of-rafetus-turtles/4901/

Turtle Conservation Fund –(Posted March 26, 2009)
TCF Grant Awards Asia
Six grants were awarded for projects in Asia or involving Asian species including two in Myanmar, on in the Philippines, one involving Chinese species, one in Cambodia, and another in Vietnam.  View the grant list and projects.

ATCN – March 23, 2009
New paper on phylogeography of black-breasted leaf turtle (Geoemyda spengleri)
A paper by Shiping Gong et al., explores the genetic differences between populations of Geoemyda spenglerii within China and northern Vietnam, noting that the species can be divided into three clades; two in China and one in Vietnam.

ATCN Posting – Reported March 18, 2009
Malayan Giant Turtle, Orlitia borneensis hunting still hot in Borneo
A brief field note from Borneo on hunting of giant Malayan turtles.    

Turtle Conservation Fund (TCF) – March 13, 2009
TCF Call for Proposals
The next round of funding has been announced by the TCF.  Proposals are due May 1, 2009.  Grants are open for turtle conservation projects of any kind, but TCF priority species are listed at the bottom of the announcement.    

Myanmar Times – February 23, 2009
US group work to save Myanmar turtles
A news story linked to the most recent mission to Myanmar by Rick Hudson of the Turtle Survival Alliance and efforts underway to protect Myanmar’s turtles. 
ATCN Note:  The story incorrectly notes that there are only seven native species in Myanmar.  In fact there are 24 confirmed native species in Myanmar (not including marine turtles) and seven endemic species, found ONLY in Myanmar.

The Straits Times – February 23, 2009
Box turtles facing threat
A news article on the recent TRAFFIC report on the trade of Cuora amboninensis (Malaysian box turtle). The report suggests that as many as 2.1 million box turtles are traded annually, most going to markets in Asia, but also to pet stores in the US and Europe.    

Times of India – February 23, 2009
One arrested with tortoise skins worth lakhs
A man was arrested with 109 tortoise skins in Lucknow, India when authorities conducted a routine search of packages at railway and bus stations.  The man stated that the turtles mostly came from the Ghagra River and that tortoise skins were often sold to China. 
ATCN Note:  Tortoise skins undoubtedly refer to “tortoise shells”

DPA – February 11, 2009 (Hong Kong)
Hong Kong Customs Seizure Rare Turtles and Wildlife
Customs officers in Hong Kong International Airport seized two rare Angonoka tortoises and other wildlife from a passenger arriving from Thailand. The tortoises are endemic to Madagascar and are considered amongst the rarest in the world

University of Bengkulu – January 26, 2009 (posted)
Integrating Turtle Conservation in Education of Elementary School Students in Indonesia
A report by Dr. Aceng Ruyani on a new education program focused on conservation of turtles implemented in a middle school in Bengkulu city of southwestern Sumatra, Indonesia

Turtle Survival Alliance – January 26, 2009 (Posted)
Developing an integrated strategy for handling confiscated turtles in Burma
A brief summary of developments in Burma as reported by Rick Hudson of the TSA, including news on a January workshop in Mandalay on dealing with confiscated turtles, and updates on star tortoises and conservation breeding of Kachuga (Batagur) trivittata at the Yadadabon Zoo. 

The Telegraph – January 16, 2009
Barak turtles last spotted in your neighbor's soup (India)
At least five species of-shell turtles are disappearing from the Barak Valley as hunters seek profits selling freshwater turtles to local markets.     

TRAFFIC – January 9, 2009 (posted)
Illegal trade of Malaysian box turtles in Malaysia
A new TRAFFIC report details an investigation into the illegal trade of Southeast Asian box turtles (Cuora amboinensis) in Malaysia.  Scientists estimate at as much as 22,000 box turtles may be exported illegally from Malaysia each year.

Education for Nature – Vietnam (ENV) – January 6, 2009
Critically endangered turtles rescued from trade (Vietnam)
Environmental Police  and Forest rangers confiscated 19 turtles representing six species including two critically endangered species; Mauremys annamensis and Cuora bourreti. 


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