Task force appointed to assist sea turtle research and conservation

    A young hawksbill sea turtle

    A National Sea Turtle Task Force has been appointed for a three-year term to assist with research and conservation in T&T.

    The decision, which comes ahead of the turtle nesting season of March to August, was announced today by Planning Minister Camille Robinson-Regis.

    The task force is chaired by the Environmental Management Authority and includes government ministries and NGOs including Turtle Village Trust, Nature Seekers, Grande Riviere Tour Guide Association and Save our Turtles.

    It is mandated to investigate and provide solutions to traditional threats such as by-catch, illegal poaching, pollution and habitat loss as well as other threats brought about by climate change.

    It will also be responsible for providing technical guidance to government, revising the Sea Turtle Recovery Action Plan, identifying funding for local programmes and projects, collaborating with stakeholders and building public awareness.

    Five species of sea turtles visit T&T: the Hawksbill is critically endangered, the Green Turtle is endangered and the Leatherback, Loggerhead and Olive Ridley are vulnerable.