Thursday, April 28, 2016
Ah, the Red Crowned Roof Turtle
This critically endangered but beautiful freshwater turtle can be found in South Asia, although only a few hundred remain. The turtles like to bask in the sun on land. In the breeding season, the heads and necks of male turtles exhibit bright red, yellow and blue coloring. The females excavate nests in which they lay clutches of up to thirty eggs.
Historically, this turtle was found in central Nepal, northeastern India, Bangladesh and probably Burma, but it has suffered declines in population due to being harvested for meat and shells, drowned in fishing nets, water pollution, hydro-electric schemes and habitat loss. Fewer than four hundred adult females are thought to remain in the wild, with the International Union for Conservation of Nature rating this turtle as being "critically endangered." India has put conservation measures in place, and a captive breeding program has been initiated.
The large Batagur turtles are probably the most threatened freshwater turtles in India. Their populations have now been drastically reduced due to poaching for their meat and shells, accidental drowning in fishing gear, water pollution, hydroelectric infrastructure projects, habitat destruction by sand mining, and egg predation by jackals.
Posted by Henry H. Turtle