TUR­TLE TOURIST TRAPS

Some con­ser­va­tion projects are keeping hatch­lings in poor con­di­tions to at­tract tourists.

BBC Wildlife Magazine - - Agenda News -

Some sea tur­tle hatch­eries around the world are cash­ing in on tourists but achiev­ing noth­ing for tur­tle con­ser­va­tion, ac­cord­ing to an eth­i­cal hol­i­day com­pany.

Re­spon­si­ble Travel has ac­cused some projects of un­nec­es­sar­ily keeping hatch­ling tur­tles in tanks purely so that tourists can pick them up and take ‘self­ies’.

They are kept in over­crowded con­di­tions in which dis­eases can be passed be­tween the tur­tles.

“Sea tur­tle ex­perts don’t rec­om­mend tanks,” says Re­spon­si­ble Travel’s Vicki Brown, who drew up a set of guide­lines for peo­ple want­ing to visit tur­tle con­ser­va­tion projects. “I’ve read through sev­eral re­ports, and there are no ben­e­fits listed [ for them].”

Re­spon­si­ble Travel says any­one want­ing to visit a tur­tle con­ser­va­tion project should ask a num­ber of ques­tions be­fore com­mit­ting them­selves.

A taste of free­dom: some tur­tle hatch­lings aren’t so lucky.

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