Ecology and conservation of sea turtles in the Dutch Caribbean
Early in 2015 the research project “Ecology and conservation of green and hawksbill turtles in the Dutch Caribbean” started funded by NWO.
The six Dutch Caribbean islands (Aruba, Curaçao, Bonaire, Saba, St. Maarten and St. Eustatius) are home to nesting populations and foraging grounds of the endangered green turtle, Chelonia mydas, and the critically endangered hawksbill turtle, Eretmochelys imbricata. The known threats in the Caribbean are: egg poaching, pollution, incidental catches, and habitat degradation. The Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs’ “Nature Policy Plan Dutch Caribbean” flags sea turtles as a high conservation priority, yet no (governmentally supported) coordinated conservation program has been implemented. The development of an effective and well-founded conservation program is hampered by the incomplete and disparate knowledge of basic sea turtle ecology. This project aims to provide a solid ecological foundation upon which to base management strategies for green and hawksbill turtles in the Dutch Caribbean, such as gaps of knowledge on the migration routes, population demographics and habitat use of sea turtles within the Caribbean.
This news article was published in BioNews 20
BioNews is produced by the Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance and funded by the Ministry of Economic Affairs.