Indian scientists release critically endangered turtles back into wild, turtles immediately defect to Bangladesh

Mar 7th

Sometimes, it's as if a species is facing extinction for a reason:

Yeah, so the Northern River Terrapin – native to South Asia – is critically endangered and considered extinct outside certain places in India, Bangladesh, and Myanmar. A group of Indian scientists released 10 of them with GPS devices in the Bay of Bengal in eastern India (where the turtle is now extinct) so they could track their movements and hopefully get a better handle on how to preserve and maintain the species.

The little suckers had other plans, however, as 3 of them immediately left the nation for neighboring Bangladesh. One even swam a whopping 250 miles!

In just six weeks after the release, at least three of the ten individuals of the critically endangered Northern River Terrapin (Batagur baska) have travelled hundreds of kilometers and are now in Bangladesh.

C'mon, little guys! Don't you know these scientists are trying to save you?? These scientists spent a decade raising these turtles so they could release a few back into the wild!

Maybe the turtles really don't like the mangrove forests of India.

Of the three turtles in Bangladesh, one was caught by fishermen in Bangladesh who removed the transmitter from the animal.

"Fortunately, there was a telephone number on the transmitter and somehow the fishermen contacted the TSA office and we approached officials of the Sundarban Tiger Reserve. We are trying to bring the turtle back to India," Dr. Singh said.

I tried to Google how much it costs to extradite a turtle from Bangladesh, but our wise tech lords haven't faced that question yet.

"We are trying to bring back the animal but at present the animal is at a facility under Khulna Forest Department. Bangladesh also has a facility for Batagur Baska, and the animal which is injured is at the facility," [Deputy Director of the Sundarbans Tiger Reserve Justin] Jones said.

Making things worse is the fact that 4 of the 10 GPS transmitters aren't working properly.

At what point in this endless quest do you just shrug your shoulders and resign the species to its fate??


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