WCS and the Turtle Survival Alliance's Myanmar Turtle Team recently transferred 24 Burmese eyed turtles to a newly-established "assurance colony" at the Pan Pyo Let Monastery near Bago, about 45 miles north of Yangon.
Assurance colonies are designed to prevent extinctions by housing and maintaining populations of endangered species in captivity, in order to re-introduce them and their offspring into the wild once current threats to their existence have been eliminated.
These 24 turtles had originally been rescued from a monastery pond in Rakhine State.
The turtles immediately took to their new quarters, a spacious natural pond with lush vegetation growing around the periphery. Within minutes of the release, the team observed turtles grazing on aquatic grasses.
The Burmese eyed turtle is endemic to Myanmar, and virtually nothing is known about its natural history. Unfortunately, this species is being devastated by the illegal wildlife trade.
You can learn more about WCS's efforts to protect turtles and other species in Myanmar right here.
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