Sea Turtele Eggs Poaching in Sangalaki Increases by 120 Percent

Illegal poaching of sea turtle egss in Sangalaki Island, Berau regency, East Borneo, Indonesia increases by more than 120% compared to 2013. Records of the Natural Resource Conservation Agency of Berau mentions that in 2013 there were 5 poaching cases, while in 2014 there were 11 cases or 120% more than the previous year.

2014 also witness an upsurge in the number of pillaged sea turtle nest. If in 2013 there were 28 pillaged nests, in 2014 the number swelled by 253% into 99 nests.

This trend is worrysome, as the number of nesting sea turtles is also decreasing. In 2013, the average number of nesting sea turtle was 15 per night, whereas in 2014 the number averaged only 11 sea turtles per night.

According to observations conducted by Protection of Forest & Fauna (PROFAUNA) Indonesia, the trade of sea turtle eggs is still rampant in East Borneo. The illicit practice can be found in Bontang, Samarinda, and Tanjung Redeb. The eggs are sold for IDR 6,000-12,500 each.

The coordinator of PROFAUNA Borneo, Bayu Sandi, said "All species of sea turtles and their eggs are protected by the law, thus the trade is a violation." The law no.5 of 1990 Concerning the Conservation of Living Natural resources and Its Ecosystem mentions that poachers and traders of protected wildlife species and its body parts are liable to 5 years of prison and IDR 100 million fines.

 "PROFAUNA encourages a better protection of Sangalaki Island, and more serious efforts to curb eggs poaching and trade in East Borneo. The Natural Resource Conservation Agency has been working hard on this, but it must be supported by other parties as well," stated Bayu Sandi.

Sangalaki Island which is inhabited by sea turtles, is also a well-known tourism site. The Natural Resource Conservation Agency of Berau noted that there were 1,482 tourists came to Sangalaki, mostly from East Borneo and Jakarta.

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ProFauna Indonesia is an Indonesian society for the protection of
wild animals and their habitats