Bengkulu, Sumatra (ANTARA News) – Turtle poaching and illegal trading are still rampant on Enggano island North Bengkulu District, Bengkulu Province, Sumatra Island, a local resident said
“Last week, a 100-kg leatherback sea turtle was poached and its meat was sold, while its shell was thrown away into the sea,” Zulvan Zaviery, a resident of Enggano, said here Monday.
Turtle poaching activities on Enggano Island was a big concern because the animal was used not only for traditional ceremonies but for commercial purposes as well, he said.
In fact, turtle meat was not a must in a traditional ceremony menu, he said, adding, however, poaching continued.
Head of the Enggano Island Nature Resource Conservation Agency (BKSDA) Rendra Regen Rais said turtle poaching on the country`s outer most island was very rampant.
The population of turtle on the island has dropped drastically due to massive poaching activities for commercial purposes, according to him.
Enggano Island beach is the habitat of several turtles which lay eggs there. Besides poaching, lizards and wild boars also eat turtle eggs.
According to data of BKSDA, there are five species of endangered turtle in Bengkulu waters, namely leatherback turtle, green turtle, hawksbill turtle, Loggerhead Turtle (Caretta caretta), and ridley turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea).