One of the world's most endangered turtle species named Burmese roofed turtle finally gets the Last chance to sustain their existence. An animal rescue team from Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)/Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA) has found 44 fertile eggs from Myanmar. The turtle species is Scientifically known as Batagur trivittata and there are less than five females left.
WCS rescuers described that incidental loss in fishing gear, overharvesting of eggs, and habitat loss due to gold mining are the main reason that leading those turtles towards the extinction. According to the WCS, scientists have been monitoring the nesting sites for past 11 years.
In 2014 scientists found only one viable egg and in 2015 they have released some young male turtles to inseminate the females turtles. These newly discovered eggs were found from the nesting site of Chindwin River. Now those eggs are protected under incubation and 24 hours of monitoring at the river bank. Scientists are assuming, eggs will be hatched until July.
Regional Herpetologist of WCS and lead researcher, Steven Platt said,“Every year we hold our breath until the female turtles emerge from the river and lay their eggs”.Platt and his team now planning to conduct DNA test on the hatchlings.
Seeker reported that currently, 600 juvenile turtles are in captive populations in all sizes. Conservationists are now planning to release them into the wild to trace their paternity. Yadanabon Zoo members are also helping to breed Burmese roofed turtles. Zoo stuffs modified their diet with protein rich supplements.
With the collaboration of WCS, zoo stuffs also constructed fences around their nesting sites to protect the eggs from pigs, dogs, snakes, monitor lizards. Meanwhile, in Lawkanandar Wildlife Sanctuary the number of turtles are remarkably increasing. Scientists are expecting their reproduction would begin again within the next year or two.