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Indigenous women helping to conserve glowing turtles

Date: 15-Feb-18
Author: Josh Cole

An endangered loggerhead turtle © Wikipedia

An endangered loggerhead turtle

Have you ever seen a glowing turtle? The loggerhead turtle is one of the few recorded bioluminescent turtles, meaning in the right conditions it appears to glow in the dark.

Unfortunately, the combined threats of untended fishing gear and aquatic plastic pollution lead to many loggerhead turtle deaths, and their aversion to artificial light makes it hard to breed them in captivity.

This has led to efforts to preserve their natural breeding environments and to track the remaining population, including at the breeding grounds at Dirk Hartog Island in Western Australia.

The ABC spoke to six indigenous women from nearby Shark Bay who refer to themselves as the Buyungurra Nyarlu Gang, which means ‘Turtle Women Gang’ in the Malgana language, who over four nights tagged and measured turtles coming to lay eggs on the island.

The tagging is part of a yearly volunteer effort organised by the WA Department of Parks and Wildlife. Both Planet Ark and the Turtle Women Gang are looking forward to see how the loggerheads are doing next year.

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Positive Environment News has been compiled using publicly available information. Planet Ark does not take responsibility for the accuracy of the original information and encourages readers to check the references before using this information for their own purposes.


Josh                                              Cole
Author: Josh Cole

Josh comes to Planet Ark after a stint in legal communication and from a background in print journalism. He studied Communications and Media as a mature age student in Wollongong where he re-discovered his love for the natural environment.

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