Take Action for Tortises Now.

The most mind-blowing photos you will ever see of the universe (msn.com)

Take actions for Tortoise.  Be the hare now.

Staying one step ahead of the illegal tortoise trade 

These tortoises are tinier than most – no bigger than a small loaf of bread. They inhabit the mountains of Kyrgyzstan, spending their days ambling over the grassy foothills, barely visible amongst the vegetation they graze on.  

But despite their small size, steppe tortoises are hugely sought after.  

And this demand is killing them.  

These treasured tortoises are being stolen from the wild to keep up with the rampant illegal pet trade in nearby countries, as well as demand for their eggs for use in traditional medicines.

They’re being smuggled out, and are so small that it’s disturbingly easy for them to be hidden among produce like cabbages and tomatoes.  

Recent surveys by FFI have shown an alarming decrease in the number of steppe tortoises – in 1962 there were around 30 individuals per hectare; there are now only one or two. 

For a species with a relatively low reproduction rate, this is extremely worrying. Whilst a few juvenile tortoises are being found, it is probably not enough to sufficiently maintain the population in the future.  

And for the lucky few that manage to remain hidden from the collectors, it’s still not safe. 

Habitat destruction is rife – new roads are ripping through the country and intensive development is smothering the once-lush land. Extensive livestock grazing and competition for food is having a devastating effect.

We must help these captivating creatures, before it is too late.  

With your donations, we can increase investigations into the illegal tortoise trade and work with the government to raise awareness of the problem. We are also looking to begin a significant new project working with sniffer dogs to detect smuggled tortoises.  

Please, give today and help us give this vanishing species a second chance. Their future depends on the help of people like you – with your support we can stop them disappearing forever.

Conserving Kyrgyzstan.

Kyrgyzstan – Fauna & Flora International (fauna-flora.org)  

AND:

A Giant Tortoise Was Thought to Be Extinct. One Was Just Found Alive on the Galapagos Islands.

For more than a century, scientists have thought that a rare species of giant tortoise was extinct. But a lone tortoise was found on an Ecuadorian island, and just a few weeks ago lab results proved that the two specimens are related — meaning the species could live on and come back from presumed extinction after all!  

Sign now to tell the Ecuadorian government to invest in research and conservation efforts to help recover this iconic turtle species!

The Galápagos Islands are crucial hotspots of biodiversity, and studying the conservation of this turtle will inevitably protect other species bound up in the area’s ecosystem, too. We must tell the Ecuadorian government: invest funds into the research and conservation of this species of tortoise immediately!

We have a unique opportunity to bring this incredible species back — sign the petition to help make it happen!

P.S. Tragically, all 14 different species of giant Galápagos tortoise are listed on the IUCN Red List as either vulnerable, endangered, critically endangered or extinct. Sign to help!

Regards Mark

With thanks to our friends at ‘The Guardian’ newspaper – London.

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