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Madagascar's Radiated Tortoise Threatened With Extinction

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n2doc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-12-10 01:40 PM
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Madagascar's Radiated Tortoise Threatened With Extinction
ScienceDaily (Apr. 12, 2010) A team of biologists from the Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA) and Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) reported April 5 that Madagascar's radiated tortoise -- considered one of the most beautiful tortoise species -- is rapidly nearing extinction due to rampant hunting for its meat and the illegal pet trade.

The team predicts that unless drastic conservation measures take place, the species will be driven to extinction within the next 20 years.

The team recently returned from field surveys in southern Madagascar's spiny forest, where the once-abundant tortoises occur. They found entire regions devoid of tortoises and spoke with local people who reported that armed bands of poachers had taken away truckloads of tortoises to supply open meat markets in towns such as Beloha and Tsihombe. Poaching camps have been discovered with the remains of thousands of radiated tortoises, and truckloads of tortoise meat have been seized recently.

"Areas where scores of radiated tortoises could be seen just a few years ago have been poached clean," said James Deutsch, director of the Wildlife Conservation Society's Africa Program. "Back then one could hardly fathom that this beautiful tortoise could ever become endangered, but such is the world we live in, and things can -- and do -- change rapidly."

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/1004051525...

Sucks....
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Statistical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-12-10 01:53 PM
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1. Horrible. Human really suck sometimes. n/t
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pscot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-12-10 02:20 PM
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2. The island is desperately poor
and its population is exploding. They're following Haiti's model, as is the Philippines. The prognosis is bleak.

http://www.wildmadagascar.org/conservation/threats.html
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eppur_se_muova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-12-10 05:49 PM
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3. It's unhealthy to be radiated.
Seriously, these turtles are too handsome for their own good. I can't imagine killing them for their meat -- just think what pet stores would pay for such an eye-catching animal. (I'd rather *NOT* see them exported for trade, but it's a Hell of a lot better than killing them.)
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