Help protect one of the last places on Earth where endangered sea turtles nest every night of the year.
Bangkaru is the only island off the west-coast of Sumatra where sea turtle still nest every day of the year. Sadly, despite their status as protected, sea turtles are not safe from poachers. Although remote islands provide the perfect places for turtles to nest, they are also incredibly hard to patrol, making them the perfect places for poachers.
Before setting up the Bangkaru Turtle Ranger Programme, poachers visited Bangkaru Island’s beaches every night, harvesting all turtle eggs from the freshly laid nests. This equated too as many as 1,500 eggs a night, threatening the existence of the green and leatherback sea turtles, which are already on the IUCN's Endangered and Critically Endangered Red List.
Since setting up the ranger programme, and patrolling Bangkaru’s beach’s every morning and night, we have been able to reduce this number to zero. It was not an easy feat, and the rangers were met with hostility at first. But, gradually through educating and gaining the trust and respect of the local community, we have been able to achieve our goal of stopping poaching on Bangkaru.
As habitat destruction and poaching continue to decimate global biodiversity, places like Bangkaru are becoming increasingly important as the last place where wildlife can be truly safe. However, this safety comes at a cost and requires the dedication of many hardworking individuals. Through showing the world the beauty of Bangkaru, we have the chance to secure its protection as one of the last truly wild places on earth.
As a leading figure in wildlife film production, Paul Hilton's films act as powerful means to spread important conservation messages. Through his camera lens, Paul Hilton has helped stop the killing of Manta’s in Lamakera and assisted with extending the protection of various shark species throughout Asia. By creating a film about Bangkaru, we can spread the message of just how important the island is for global turtle populations!Ranger Patrols
The projects rangers patrol twice daily, a night patrol between 8 - 10 pm, and a morning patrol at 5 am. These times have been carefully chosen, as these are the times that poachers are most active. If the rangers anticipate poachers, they carefully use their knowledge of local culture to diffuse the situation. Sometimes the rangers can be put into hostile situations, but they have been trained to deal with
Whilst on patrol, the rangers collect data on how many turtles are nesting, the size of the turtle, if the turtle is previously known to science, and the location of the nest sites. This data is then fed back into HAkA's data-set to further develop a picture of the importance of this site and the health of Indonesia's sea turtle populations.
Our goal is to completely eradicate poaching on Bangkaru Island and ensure the survival of these amazing but increasingly endangered creatures. We know that Bangkaru is west Indonesia’s most prolific turtle nesting site, and with your help we can keep it that way!
For more information, please watch the video posted below or visit this blog post