Assessments of extinction risk for marine turtle species in the Pacific (March 2020 to present)

The Marine Research Foundation is leading a sea turtle extinction risk study for sea turtles in the Pacific Ocean on behalf of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), an intergovernmental organisation charged with promoting cooperation among Pacific islands countries and territories to protect and improve their environment and ensure sustainable development.  …

Conservation of biodiversity, seagrass ecosystems and their services – safeguarding food security and resilience in vulnerable coastal communities in a changing climate (January 2019 to present)

Seagrass meadows of the Indo-Pacific, where up to one billion people are supported by inshore fisheries, are declining as a result of coastal development, deforestation, unsustainable resource use, and environmental degradation. Globally seagrasses occupy around 600,000km2 and account for 12% of total carbon stored in ocean sediments. However, seagrass losses result in a reduced capacity…

Dugong Bycatch Questionnaire (2010 to present)

Dugongs are vulnerable to fisheries, traditional hunting, large-scale losses of seagrass, smaller-scale habitat loss and boat traffic. Entanglement in fishing gear is the predominant threat as dugongs are by-caught in many kinds of fishing gear, in both commercial and artisanal fisheries. The threat is considered major, but the magnitude of the impact is largely unquantified in many countries. To address this, the Marine Research Foundation and a team of experts from around the globe developed a survey questionnaire which can be implemented at low cost and across large geographical areas. The survey is also designed to collect data on marine turtles and other cetaceans, and can be adapted to just about any marine or freshwater species

Population structure and dynamics of marine turtles in the Tubbataha Reefs, Cagayancillo, Palawan, Philippines (2010-present)

Marine turtles are integral components of marine ecosystems at the Tubbataha Marine Park World Heritage Site, and priority conservation species Nationally and within the Sulu-Sulawesi Seascape programme, the IOSEA MoU, the CTI Regional Action Plan, and the ASEAN Sea Turtle MoU. The reefs at Tubbataha, Cagayancillo, Palawan, Philippines, are a developmental and nesting habitat for Endangered green turtles (Chelonia mydas), and a foraging habitat for Critically Endangered hawksbill turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata)

Malaysia Turtle Excluder Devices Project (2007-present)

The greatest threat to sea turtles in Malaysia is accidental capture in commercial and artisanal fisheries. Sea turtles have the unfortunate legacy of sharing habitats with some of our favourite foods, and of all the threats to their existence, the shrimp industry is perhaps the biggest. As shrimp trawl nets roll along the seabed they indiscriminately catch and drown numerous sea turtles. The conservation outlook for turtles has slowly improved thanks to small management changes at national parks, but the threat posed by thousands of shrimp trawlers has remained paramount. And yet a very practical and inexpensive solution exists in the form of Turtle Excluder Devices (or TEDs)

Research and conservation of sea turtles at Mantanani (2006-present)

The general life-cycle of marine turtles is similar among species, but even given the amount of knowledge we presently have about sea turtles, there are some crucial gaps that have the potential to undermine management efforts. Among these is the knowledge of how many turtles join the breeding population in any given year, the period between onshore migration of juveniles to adulthood, and natural sex ratios in the wild. Lack of a clear understanding of any of these can have an effect on how turtle population data is interpreted and how this results in conservation action