SOS Tartarugas works in Cape Verde protecting nesting loggerheads turtles (Caretta caretta) and their habitat. Cape Verde is the third most important nesting area for loggerheads in the world. Turtles are at risk from hunting for meat, stealing of eggs, removal of sand for building and unregulated tourism development. Our email is
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Thursday, February 5, 2009

First season results

What an amazing season. This time last year when we were dreaming of a small project that could help to reduce the number of turtles killed here on Sal and get people talking about all the threats to their habitat, I had no idea what we were about to start. 12 full time Rangers and many volunteers combining with colleagues from the Camara Municipal, Dept of Environment, Police and numerous others really changed the situation here forever.

Everyone who was involved can feel really proud of what was achieved - a 72% reduction in mortality of nesting turtles on the beaches of Sal. This means we went from 1 in 9 turtles killed to 1 in 62. Our sincere thanks to everyone who supported us in any way.

Here are a few other interesting statistics :

Total number of turtle emergences : 1,238
Beach with the most activities : Black Sand Beach (Algodoeiro/West Coast in front of Cotton Bay)
The beach with the most nests was Ponta Jelonga with 47 (just north of Igrijinha)
Most surprising area was to the east of Santa Maria (beyond Leme Bedje) where 36 turtles came ashore among all the rocks and rubbish (oh yes, the turtles are crazy)
Total number of turtles killed was 39, the majority at Mont Leao (13)
The number of turtles saved by direct action by Rangers or police was 19
The total number of turtles tagged was 101.
Total number of nests 346
Total number of nests in the hatchery 89 (26% of nests relocated)
The largest nest recorded had 153 eggs, the smallest had 15 eggs (average 81 eggs).
The first nest hatched on the 12th August and the last on Christmas Day, December 25th
The average incubation time in the hatchery was 59 days.
The average incubation time for nests on the beach was 56 days.
Babies born in the hatchery - 5,517

The full report in English and Portuguese can be downloaded from our website or

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