WWF-Malaysia project turtle found dead

The World Wildlife Fund-Malaysia (WWF-Malaysia) is disappointed that a hawksbill turtle from a research project on the life of turtles nesting in the state was found dead in Paka here last Wednesday.

WWF-Malaysia Turtle and Painted Terrapin Rehabilitation Programme head Rahayu Zulkifli said a satellite device, Platform Transmitter Terminal (PTT), was fixed onto the turtle’s body to monitor its movements after laying eggs in
Terengganu.

“We are deeply saddened and disappointed by the death and we have yet to identify the cause,” she told Bernama here.

Rahayu said the WWF released four hawksbill turtles in Kemaman and Setiu under the programme, of which one was a mother turtle found dead.

She said the WFF had fixed a PTT on the turtle’s body last Wednesday after it landed to lay eggs for the first time on the Ma’Daerah beach. However, it was found dead on the same day in Paka.

Rahayu said the turtle did not stray far during the nesting season and was believed to have been in Terengganu waters before it died.

She added that past studies showed that turtles migrated to the Riau islands in Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines after nesting in Terengganu.

In another development, she said WWF-Malaysia also held painted terrapin rehabilitation programmes in the Kuala Baru area in Setiu and Kerteh here to prevent their extinction in the future.

This year, Rahayu said, 160 terrapin nests were hatched in Kerteh, while 110 nests were hatched in Kuala Baru here. Each nest contained between 10 and 15 eggs.

– Bernama