Solution: Our protection project on Boavista, Cape Verde
In 2008, responding to the brutal sloughtering of loggerhead turtle females on Boavista’s beaches, Turtle Foundation sent personnel to Boavista to establish a monitoring presence on Porto Ferreira beach, one of the main nesting beaches. In 2007, over 600 turtles were killed on this beach alone. In 2008, as a result of Turtle Foundations beach protection program, only 60 turtles were identified as killed on this beach, representing a 90% reduction in mortality.
By continuously expanding the protection program to additional nesting beaches – by now 5 nesting beaches with a length of nearly 30 kilometers are being protected – we have reduced the number of sea turtles killed on Boavista year after year. The nesting beaches are being patrolled and protected by Turtle Foundation with support from the Cape Verde military as well as volunteers from around the world. In addition a data collection program and turtle tagging program has been initiated.
(Images: Left: Loggerhead turtle female after egg deposition. Middle: Beach camp of the Turtle Foundation in the north of Boavista. Right: Lesson of the “School in Nature” project in Turtle Foundation’s beachcamp at the beach of Boa Esperança.)
The Turtle Foundation also spends a great deal of time and effort on community education and involvement and will continue to expand this program. The Turtle Foundation conducts turtle biology/conservation presentations, sponsors art and educational programs for school children, organizes beach clean-ups, provides training sessions for tour agencies for turtle walks, and other community events and will continue these activities.