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By Ordoh Staff. Published on Feb 23, 2014. 0
Blue Ventures Conservations and staff at the University of Exeter’s Centre for Ecology and Conservation conducted a study and found more than 42,000 turtles are legally harvested annually by fisheries in 42 countries or territories. They hoped to assess how this threat is compared to other threats to marine turtles across the world.
Frances Humber of Blue Ventures and a PhD student at the University of Exeter said this finding is done to review comprehensively the legal take of the species in recent years, and the study also allows them in assessing the relative fisheries threats to it.
Humber added the direct legal take is a major source of mortality now despite the increased protection of marine turtles nationally and internationally. The greater threat comes from illegal fisheries and bycatch.
There are seven marine turtle species listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Bycatch is unintentional trapping while catching other species.
For centuries marine turtles have been captured commercially around the world. From data it is revealed around 17,000 tones of the species were captured in late 1960s globally. Around 380,000 were captured in 1968 in Mexico alone.
The recent conservational awareness has brought forward 178 countries to sign up the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) to restrict trade of turtles and turtle products in international market. However, the captures have been still continuing legally in many regions across the world.
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