Painted Terrapin Hatchlings Released into River. All are marked with Pit Tags for future monitoring.
In commemorating of National Conservation Day on 10th August 2016, the Agency for Natural Resources Conservation in Aceh (BKSDA) and Yayasan Satucita Lestari Indonesia released dozens of baby of Painted Terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) into Tamiang River, the habitat of this critically endangered species. The ceremony was held in village Pusong Kapal, Tuesday (16/8).
Painted Terrapin or called Tuntong Laut in local language is one of the threatened species that population has decreased sharply in last decades. The decreasing of this vertebrate species is caused by poaching. The heavy poaching of adults has massively occurred in 80’s to 90’s, while the poaching of eggs has been practiced by villagers since decades ago. Even, the poaching of eggs seems a tradition and locals have a local cuisine nemed Tengulik that made from egg. This food is like a jam and people eat it with birdlime.
Head of BKSDA Aceh, Genman Suhefti Hasibuan, Shut, MM, said that the importance to raise the public awareness on conservation efforts, the Government has assigned 10 August 10 as National Conservation Day. Therefore, in order to achieve that aim, BKSDA Aceh in cooperation with the Foundation releasing 20 hatchlings of Painted Terrapin into origial habitat.
Indonesia is known as a mega biodiversity place. Thus, that is become a duty and responsibility for us to preserve and utilize the natural resources in sustainable ways. So, the future generation is still have a chance to enjoy it.
According to him, there are various ways to preserve nature and biodiversity, including the natural resources in Aceh Tamiang. Some of them are improving knowledge and awareness on the preservation of plants and wildlife, taking a part to prevent illegal logging, prevent wild plants and animals smuggling, either protected or unprotected.
He said that utilization of plants and rare animals should be in appropriate or sustainable ways according ecological balance and environmental carrying capacity. Further, Minister of Forestry Decree P.57 / Menhut-II / 2008 has set a Strategic Directions on National Species Conservation.
“One of the species that have a very high priority and live in Aceh Tamiang is Painted Terrapin,” he said.
Painted Terrapin is listed in Appendix II CITES (Convention on International Trade ON Endangered Species) . Tuntong sea is endangered and listed in the Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
In the same time, a founder and principal researcher of Satucita Foundation, Joko Guntoro, said the hatchlings released is only a some of total hatchlings that resulted from annual nest patrol that conducted from December 2015 To April 2016.
“This release is only symbolic to commemorate the Indonesian Conservation Day. The remaining, 645 hatchlings, will be released in end of ,” Joko said said.
He is also stated the importance of cooperation with and support from villagers and government to save this aquatic species.
“Without the cooperation and support of the community, it can be implemented as of, for example a current support from PT Pertamina Field Rantau to organize this event and genetic study. We are also getting support from Turtle Survival Alliance, Chester Zoo, Houston Zoo for conducted nest patrol, field monitoring, raising the hatchlings.” Joko said.
The ceremony was attended by representative of Pertamina Field Rantau, Forest Management Unit III Langsa, Aceh Tamiang Office of Fisheries and Maritime, Office of Environmental, Office of Forestry and Plantations, Navy Post in Seruway, community leaders in Seruway.
One hundred and nine Green turtle (Chelonia mydas) hatchlings released back to the sea in the ceremony attended by Regent of Aceh Tamiang District and another local leaders and stakeholders that was held in Beach Pusong Cium, Subdistrict Seruway, Aceh, Indonesia. Continue reading “Green Turtle Hatchlings Released Back to the Sea”
A total of 20 hatchlings of Painted Terrapin (Batagur borneoensis), an endangered species, released back on to the original habitat, Tamiang River, District of Aceh Tamiang (12/08/2015). According to the IUCN, Painted Terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) is a critically endangered species and listed in Top World’s 25 Most Endangered Turtles at the Global Level. Continue reading “Painted Terrapin Released Back Into Habitat”
Socialization and discussion to conserve Painted Terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) and habitat was held in Subdistrict Seruway on 21 October 2015. The socialization and discussion was held to strengthen the knowledge and planning of Satucita Foundation and two community group that established to protect the species. The discussion giving result that the upcoming nesting patrol, habitat rehabilitation will involve community group.
In the opening speech, Head of Subdisctrict Government of Seruway said that the conservation of this species must be supported and would like to thank to Satucita Foundation that facilitate and help locals to preserve this critically endangered species.
Meanwhile, the Head of BKSDA Langsa, Bambang Harsoyo, presented the regulation of protection on animals and plants. He also supports the Aceh Tamiang Local Government to issue a local regulation to protect this species in the district.
Joko Guntoro, program director of Painted Terrapin conservation, presented the status and distribution of this species and some scientific findings and the method to preserve wildlifes, included Painted Terrapin. In addition, the establishment of two community group was aimed to protect the species and habitat. Therefore, he aksed the commitment of the member of these groups for working together to save this species from extinction. The foundation will help and facilitate the locals to do that when the same time develop opportinities to empower villagers, such as a possibility to develop ecotourism.
In the end of discussion, member of community said that they will working together with the foundation to save the species and asked the foundation to facilitate them to protect the species and habitat, included empowerment of ex-hunters that usually take benefits from selling the eggs. The majority of member of community group is hunters that educated by the foundation to form a group to protect the species. It is expected that the groups can be developed as community ranger and take benfits from conservation in the long term.
This event was opened by opening speech by Head of Subdistrict Government of Seruway. The event was attended by 23 participants from two community group, Satucita Foundation, BKSDA Resort Langsa, Subdistrict Government of Seruway. (SF)
Public hearing to protect Painted Terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) in District of Aceh Tamiang was held on 15-16 September 2015 in Regent Office. The public hearing was held to seek inputs, comments on the draft of Local Regulation on Protection of Painted Terrapin in Aceh Tamiang.
The meeting was attended by head of villages around of the habitat this critically endangered species, Aceh Tamiang Fisheries Office and another stakeholders. Before the discussion, the Vice Regent present opening talk to all participants. After the opening talk, a Head of Fisheries Office presented the draft and the reason of why this species must be protected in Aceh Tamiang.
Then, Satucita Foundation’s director Joko Guntoro presented scientific findings and what the foundation have done to conserved this species in Aceh Tamiang included nesting patrol, field monitoring, awareness.
As a conclusion, participants supported the draft and hope that the protection must involve local community.
The situation of public hearing:
In the last three months, four sea turtles nests found on the beaches here, the same beaches to Painted terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) for laying eggs. Three nests had been harvested by fishermen before secured. Only one nest successfully secured by a fishermen who cooperated with us. So, we helped him to hatch the the eggs. Continue reading “Releasing Green Turtle Hatchlings”
Eleven hatchlings of critically endangered freshwater turtle species Painted terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) was released to its original habitat on 13 January 2015. The hatchlings are a result of our nesting patrol carried out in December 2013 to January 2014. In that nesting patrol, the eggs were secured from illegal harvesting. After secured, the eggs incubated in styrefoam boxes filled by sands.
Totally, since our preliminary study on 2010, 140 hatchlings have released into wild, their original habitat – estuaries, rivers. Fifty nine hatchlings were released on 2011, seventy seven on 2013 and eleven on 2015. The initiative is continuously develop the program to release more hatchlings this year and future, to recover wild population of this critically endangered species. To achieve this objective, annual nesting patrol, incubation, raising (headstarting), public campaign, field monitoring and researches, habitat reforestation are developed and implemented continuously.
Some organizations have supported our programs since this initiative launched. Thank you for following organizations: Mohammed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund, Chester Zoo Conservation Grant, PT Pertamina EP Rantau, Turtle Conservation Alliance.
Hundreds of Participants of Aceh Scout Camping Week Learn Painted Terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) Conservation at our headstarting facility from 23 September to 28 September 2014.
At headstarting facility, students scout watching documentary movie about our nesting patrol, learning biology, ecology and conservation of Painted terrapin carried out by us, how to raise the hatchling at headstarting ponds, playing games and icebreaker facilitated by our staff.
About 1200 students scout that take become participant in Aceh Scout Camping Week are come from 23 districts of Province of Aceh. From that total number, more than of 400 scout or one third of total participants visited our headstarting facility located in Village Sidodadi, Subdistrict Kejuruan Muda, District of Aceh Tamiang, Province of Aceh.
In this Aceh Scout Camping Week that was held on 23 to 28 September 2014, Painted terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) – a critically endangered freshwater turtle species – become an icon or mascot. Painted terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) was choosen to be a mascot by Aceh Tamiang to increase public awareness to save this species from extinction. According some surveys, included carried by Satucita Foundation, from researchers, this species has been extincted in some locations in east coast of Sumatera. Aceh Tamiang is believed to be the last stronghold for this species.
The Painted terrapin conservation carried out by Satucita Foundation has been obtained some support from many organizations since its preliminary study in 2010. That organizations are Turtle Survival Alliance, Mohammed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund, Turtle Conservation Fund, small grant from Chester Zoo, PT Pertamina EP Field Rantau. This initiative are also supported by some individuals. (SF)
Our founder and programme director, Joko Guntoro, taking a part in Conference of Society of Conservation Biology 2014 that was held in Equatorial Hotel, Malacca, Malaysia, 19-22 August 2014. In that conference, a presentation titled “The Progress of Painted Terrapin Conservation in Aceh Tamiang” was presented in a symposium specialized for chelonian.
In the presentation, Joko explained the background of why the conservation of Painted terrapin (Batagur borneoensis) must be saved in Indonesia, what have been done to save this critically endangered species, the results have achieved and the challenges to be faced in the future, included the actions must be taken to reforest the habitat, riparian vegetations, mangroves that had been converted to oil palm and farming.
In the symposium, seven presenters from Malaysia, Australia and Indonesia presented their findings of their research, progress and activities had been done to save freshwater and marine turtles. To download the abstracts of the symposium, pleased download at this link. If you want to download the programs, please use this link. A special dinner among turtle researcher was also held to build a friendship/partnership among turtle conservationists.(SF)