Santa Maria – 29 September – Over 200 turtles were killed only on Sal Island between June and September, as announced by the Biodiversity Project.
This figures far surpass the record of 177 turtles slaughtered in the archipelago in 2015, according to biologists. In Sal Island only two were found on patrolled beaches, while at unsupervised beaches the numbers reached over 200, and it may increase till the end of season.
Cape Verdean law provides severe punishment (heavy fines and even prison) for those who illegally capture turtles and at sea and on land. Offenders can however "dribble" surveillance, capture, sell and consume their flesh. The hulls are usually abandoned at sea or on the beaches, when not used for craft manufacturing.
Cape Verde is still one of the three world "maternity wards" of this endangered turtle species Careta Careta, with 12 to 13 thousand animals coming to spawn each year.
Ocean Press – Editorial Office