Thursday, November 24, 2011
About the project
Cabo Verde is the world’s third most important site for nesting loggerhead turtles. SOS Tartarugas began operations in June 2008 on Sal in response to the wholesale slaughter of turtles as they came on to the beach to nest, a situation that may have resulted in rapid extinction.. SOS Tartarugas is a non-profit environmental organisation. The main objective is to protect and conserve loggerhead turtles through deterring illegal hunting and protecting nesting habitat. We work in conjunction with local and national government and law enforcement agencies and over four years have significantly reduced the number of nesting turtles killed. SOS Tartarugas is based on Sal but also works in conjunction with other partners on several more islands. The organization is a member of TAOLA, the Cape Verdean Sea Turtle Network. For more information visit www.turtlesos.org or our blog
The project encompasses patrolling beaches (night and morning) to monitor nesting and deter hunting, data collection, research, working with tourists and local businesses, operation of hatcheries, outreach activities and beach clean-ups. The work is undertaken by full-time and part-time Rangers of many nationalities as well as volunteers from the community. Although there is a wide scope of activities within the project, protection of nesting turtles continues to be the main focus and this can be stressful and tiring, but ultimately highly rewarding. You can find more information about typical nights and days on our blog. Extracts from the log book
The usual nesting season is from June until October with hatchlings being born from mid-August until late December. The project is based in Santa Maria, a popular tourist destination known for its beaches and water-sports. Participants are based in self-catering accommodation at Turtle House, (www.surfactivity.it) a surf hotel close to the beach as well as in field camps. Due to expansion of the project there may be alternative accommodation in apartments close to Turtle House.