By Tanushree Mundra and Jordan Gray
Our TSA India Program, in collaboration with our governmental partners in Uttar Pradesh and the Wildlife Conservation Society-India, has released 108 turtles into the Chambal River. Of these, 100 were head started Red-crowned Roofed Turtles (Batagur kachuga), and 7 adult Three-striped Roofed Turtles (Batagur dhongoka) and 1 Crowned River Turtle (Hardella thurjii) rescued from black-market trade last October.
The release of the 100 head started Red-crowned Roofed Turtles continues the captive rear and release component of our long-term program to bolster the population of this critically endangered turtle in the Chambal, the last remaining stronghold for the species. This past year, the nest protection program successfully hatched 370 eggs. In May, 270 of these were released post-hatching at their natal beach in May. The 100 other hatchlings designated for head start have been cared for at the Garhaita Turtle Conservation Centre near Etawah.
The release of the adult Three-striped Roofed Turtles and Crowned River Turtle marks the successful return of all 79 turtles rescued from a black-market trade operation in October. READ THE STORY HERE!
The release was done under the supervision of Mr. Anand Kumar Srivastava‚îÄDistrict Forest Officer Chambal, Mr. Sarvesh Bhaudoriya‚îÄSub Divisional Officer Etawah, Harikishor Shukla‚îÄRange Officer Etawah Chambal Sanctuary, and conducted with the assistance of forest staff, the Chambal project staff, and Kunal Jain, a volunteer from Agra. School children and villagers from the village of Garhaita, where one of the India program's turtle facilities is based, were also invited to take part in the release. This event was also attended by Ms. Bhavna Vaal from the Press Trust of India.
To aid our efforts on behalf of endangered turtles in India, please consider becoming a TSA Donor today!