Spear gun victim. A Sea Turtle lies dead on the shores of Basdiot, Moalboal, Cebu.
Photo: Kalle Epp Facebook

Philippines: DENR-Central Visayas to probe sea turtle death
30th November 2017;

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)-Central Visayas is set to investigate an incident in Moalboal town wherein a pawikan or Sea Turtle was found dead on the town’s shores earlier this week.

Dr. Eddie Llamedo, DENR-Central Visayas public information officer, told SunStar Cebu that they have tasked the Tañon Strait Protected Seascape (TSPS) to investigate who the culprits are behind the killing of the turtle in Barangay Basdiot, Moalboal.

On his Facebook page, Kalle Epp, a netizen, claimed they found a dead Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas) in a coral reef in Sitio Tongo, Barangay Basdiot earlier this week.

A spear gun wound was found on the dead Turtle’s neck.

“We are outraged! Since several weeks we have seen an increase in people, local and foreign, coming to Moalboal for spear gun hunting as a sport and reported this to authorities,” Epp said, in his post.

Epp has appealed to officials to investigate the illegal poaching activities in Moalboal.

Cirilo Tapales, Barangay Basdiot chief, told SunStar Cebu that the dead pawikan has been turned over to the town’s tourist police.

Tapales believes that fishermen from other barangays may have speared the Turtle at night to avoid detection.

Tapales said spear hunting is illegal in Moalboal.

Llamedo said hunting Sea Turtle especially within marine protected areas like the Tañon Strait is illegal, according to Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Conservation and Protection Act.

A fisherman caught violating RA 9147 could spend jail time of up to 10 years or pay a fine of P500,000 for each Sea Turtle that he or she kills.

Llamedo also reminded the municipal government of Moalboal to boost up its monitoring activities on their coastal waters to avoid such incidents.

Sea Turtles are considered critically endangered under the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

“The presence of a pawikan is a sign of having a healthy marine ecosystem and we need people and fishers who take care of them while they travel for forage or nourishment,” Llamedo added.

Source: Sun.Star

Photo: Kalle Epp Facebook

Philippines: Sea Turtle found dead in Cebu
By Annie Perez, 30th November 2017;

Divers on Wednesday found a pawikan (Sea Turtle) dead at the Sampaguita Reef in Barangay Basdiot, Moalboal, Cebu, apparently succumbing to wounds on its face and neck.

Renato Vidal was manning a pump boat full of divers when a floating Hawksbill Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas) caught their attention. When they approached, they found out that the Turtle was already dead.

They suspect the Turtle was a victim of spear fishing.

Moalboal police have yet to determine if the Turtle was wounded on its own or was intentionally harmed.

Under Republic Act 9147, harming and killing endangered animals, including the pawikan, is punishable by law.

Moalboal Police chief Senior Insp. Jose Rovic Villarin said they are still investigating the matter.

Marine life advocates in Moalboal are now calling on the public to stop harming marine life, especially the pawikan.

Beth Balane, a dive guide, said marine life is also for the next generation to see.

The dead Turtle was turned over to the Provincial Environmental Office for further investigation.

The town of Moalboal is a dive spot in Cebu province known for its rich marine life.

Source: ABS-CBN News

TURTLE KILLED IN MOALBOAL

We have found a dead Turtle this morning at the coral reef near Sampanguita, not far from our dive shop. With by all means looks like a spear gun wound in the neck. We are outraged!

Since several weeks we have seen an increase in people, local and foreign, coming to Moalboal for spear gun hunting as a sport and reported this to authorities. The Turtle killed is one of the Green Sea Turtles (Chelonia mydas) which are a major tourist attraction, protected by national and local laws. We appeal to officials to investigate the illegal poaching activities and senseless slaughtering of protected marine life for sport in Moalboal. We offer our full support in the investigation and protection of Moalboal’s marine life. The Turtle is handed over to local authorities for determine the exact cause of death.

Source: Kalle Epp Facebook

Malaysia: Endangered Sea Turtles caught in fishing net saved by fishermen

27th October 2017;

Fishing nets are a threat to the marine ecosystem, which is proven yet again when a group of local fishermen recently saved four Sea Turtles and ending their week of misery of being caught in the fishing nets.

As reported by Kosmo!, the group stumbled upon the distressing scene at roughly 9am on Wednesday (Oct 25) with one of the four endangered marine reptiles in a fragile state as one of its hind legs was almost cut off while its abdomen was bloated.

The captain of the crew, Wan Abdul Halim Wan Mohamed Dom, recounted that they found the trawling net, which entrapped the found Sea Turtles, at 22 nautical miles from the Kuala Kerteh Fisheries Jetty and are convinced that it may have belonged to foreign fishermen.

The 43-year-old went on to elaborate that he along with his three-man crew were on their way to their fishing spot to collect the fish that have been caught, when they came across the foreign trawling net.

“We found a trawling net that was 200 metres long and 10 metres wide. After we pulled it out and cut it open, we found two Green Sea Turtles (Chelonia mydas) and two Hawksbill Sea Turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata),” the captain revealed to Kosmo! yesterday.

While Wan Abdul Halim shared that three of the Sea Turtles have been released to the sea, the severely injured turtle was taken back to the Kuala Kerteh Fisheries Jetty for treatment purposes.

He conveyed to the Malay daily that the Persatuan Khazanah Rakyat Ma’ Daerah (MEKAR) Kerteh has been informed of the discovery of the injured Hawksbill Turtle, prior handing it over to the Turtles and Marine Ecosystem Centre (TUMEC) in Rantau Abang yesterday.

Meanwhile, Fisheries Research Institute Officer Mohd Tamimi Ali Ahmad communicated that initial inspection revealed that the Hawksbill Turtle was severely injured and therefore, preventing it to swim normally.

“Based on its physical condition, it’s believed that the Hawksbill Turtle was trapped in the drift nets for a long period of time.

"The aquatic reptile is estimated to be between four and six years old and will be treated until it is fully recovered prior releasing it back to the ocean,” he affirmed.

Mohd Tamimi also underlined that the drift nets are believed to have belonged to foreign fishermen, who invaded Malaysian waters as the Department of Fisheries has banned the total use of trawling nets.

Sinar Harian reported that the officer revealed that many Sea Turtles have swam towards the middle of the sea following Vietnamese fishermen illegally harvesting marine produce mostly in the vicinity of Pulau Tenggol.

“Their illegal actions are damaging the coral reefs, which happens to be the primary ecosystem for Sea Turtles,” he lamented.

“I’m proud of the immediate action taken by our local fishermen to rescue the endangered Sea Turtles, that are protected under the Fisheries Act 1985,” he applauded.

Wan Abdul Halim on the other hand expressed his hope that enforcement measures will continue to improve as a means to ensure that foreign fishermen will not continue to threat out marine ecosystem.

Source: Malaysian Digest

Malaysia: Endangered Sea Turtles caught in fishing net saved by fishermen

Photo: Kompas.com

Indonesia: Endangered Green Turtle found dead with wounds in Polewali Mandar
14th April 2017;

A Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas) was found stranded and dead with wounds all over its body at Mampie Beach in Wonomulyo district, Polewali Mandar regency, West Sulawesi, on Thursday night.

The Green Turtle, which is listed as a protected species, was found by local residents and members of Komunitas Sahabat Penyu (Friends of Turtle Community). The dead reptile reportedly had wounds on its neck and head as well as a damaged shell.

The community’s chairman, Yusri, suspected that the turtle was beaten to death by fishermen as turtles, drawn to fishnets full of fish, are often seen during fishing activities, Yusri said.

“We will encourage all stakeholders, including local residents and the maritime police, to intensify joint patrol to protect Turtles,” Yusri said as quoted by kompas.com.

Yusri and student activists on Turtle protection further conducted an examination of the dead Turtle, including recording the Turtle’s measurements and analyzing its wounds. The dead reptile was buried so that its shell would not be illegally traded.

Friends of Turtle Community members and activists have recently intensified patrol efforts along the shores of Mampie Beach on the evenings to prevent anyone from stealing the endangered species’ eggs, as many Turtles typically lay eggs there in April.

Local residents and the Friends of Turtle Community commonly find large Turtles stranded and dead at Mampie Beach.

Source: Jakarta Post

A dead Green Sea Turtle
Photo: Allan Macatuno/Inquirer Central Luzon

Philippines: Sea turtle found dead in Pangasinan’s Hundred Islands
By Yolanda Sotelo, 9th February 2017;

A Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas), with a piece of nylon net and a hook in its mouth, was found dead at the Hundred Islands National Park on Wednesday (Feb. 8).

The Turtle was discovered near the cages of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Broodstock Development Center at 4 p.m., said the agency’s employee Mae Ann Maningning.

BFAR Veterinarian Samantha Licuden said the hook in its mouth might have killed the sea creature. She said the Turtle could have been dead for two to three days before its discovery.

Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer

A dead Sea Turtle found at Prk. 11, Baybay Kawas, Alabel, Sarangani Province
9 o’clock in the morning, January 26, 2017.

In process of its decomposition (Est. 2-4wks)
Disposal: Buried

Credits to Bantay Dagat and DENR Staff
Sir Noel Lumanta and Romeo Nobleza
ECPC Staff Chundy Bartulaba and Joylyn Ramirez Dayondon

Source: Merry Chrisse Kim Facebook

A decomposing carcass of a marine turtle was found in the mangroves at Prk. 11, Baybay Kawas, Alabel, Sarangani Province this morning.

Source: Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines Facebook

The carcass has been identified as a Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas) in the comments of the original post.