Two poachers arrested August 2st 2010 in the little beach of Água Doce, near Boa Esperança!! ………………… We were first warned of the situation by the NGO Natura2000, who told us of the high mortality on this little secluded beach (Água Doce), about 30 minutes walk from our camp in Boa Esperança, which was never protected but had plenty of activity.
Our team started regular census on this beach this month, only to find out with dismay and frustration the number of turtle carcasses accumulating every week.
Taking advantage of the presence of volunteers in the camp and a motivated team of soldiers, we started some patrols on this beach a few days ago, in hope of finding the poachers.
The “poacher hunt” set by our team in the beach yielded some results. Last night, while poachers waited patiently for the patrol to end, they did not expect that a second patrol were on their way. They were caught by surprise around 1 am, when they were supposedly “looking for crabs”, with sharp knives, 3 buckets and a dog. Typical excuse here in Boavista, but not tolerated anymore from us!
Just 4 weeks ago, a poacher was intercepted in Boa Esperança beach (also “looking for crabs”). His knife and personal belongings got confiscated and a police complaint was filed.
Unfortunately not caught in the act, the 3 butchering knives and a backpack stained with blood and stinking of turtle flesh was enough for the soldiers and then later for the police to arrest them.
We were surprised with the quick collaboration provided by the police, who quickly jumped in our car at the inconvenient time of 4:30 a.m.
These two people arrested had been previously mentioned by locals as some of the most active poachers in the area.
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Update from Joana Hancock, Field Coordinator for Turtle Foundation