There is suddenly hope for the endangered population of soft turtles in the Yangtze River. As far as is known, the last male is no longer alone now that a female turtle has been discovered in a large Vietnamese lake. “This is the best news of the year, and possibly the last decade,” a report by local conservation organizations.
Until recently, the male living in the Suzhou Chinese Zoo was considered the last of its kind. The last female, who also lived in the zoo, died suddenly a year and a half ago, a day after she was vaccinated. The death of the ninety-year-old female appears to have been an almost insurmountable obstacle to the survival of the world’s most endangered turtle species. Two other soft Yangtze turtles were known to live in Vietnam. However, it was not known whether they were male or female.
It now turns out that one of those animals is a female. After a weeks-long search in October, the 86-kilogram, meter-long turtle was briefly removed from the waters of 1,400 acres of Dongmo Lake. The DNA taken now provides a definitive answer to the genus and species of turtles. Rafetus swinhoei, also known as Yangtze softshell turtle. The turtle is the largest freshwater turtle in the world and is named after Robert Swinho, an English biologist from the nineteenth century. The species nearly disappeared as the animal hunted for food and sold its eggs as medicine to China.
Andrew Valde calls for female discovery according to Watchman “The best news of the year and actually of the last decade when it comes to turtle protection.” Walde works for the Turtle Survival Alliance, which is advising the Vietnamese government on soft turtles in the Yangtze River.
“In a year of bad news and sadness in the world, this female’s discovery provides some hope that the species will have a new opportunity to be shown to survive,” says Hoang Bich Thuy, director of the Vietnamese branch of the Association for Wildlife Conservation. Hope to multiply.
They suspect that at least one Yangtze soft-shelled turtle could be found in the lake, and a turtle weighing around 130 kg, possibly a male, was seen. Scientists hope to find it in the spring of 2021, when there is less water.
There is more hope for the soft-shelled Yangtze turtle. The remains of a turtle’s DNA were found in the water near Lake Chuan Khanh. 2021 could be a good year for endangered species.
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