26 Jun 2019

Sea turtle nesting site disturbed on Saipan

5:53 pm on 26 June 2019

It's thought a sea turtle was the target of poachers in the Northern Marianas after it was found flipped over in nesting grounds on Saipan earlier this month.

The rescued sea turtle in the CNMI.

The rescued sea turtle in the CNMI. Photo: RNZ Pacific / Mark Rabago

Lisa Sztukowski of the CNMI Endangered Species Program said the turtle, which was about to lay eggs, had been flipped over, indicating that it was likely the target of poachers.

The program is reminding people not to disturb sea turtles that are currently visiting their nesting grounds.

Only about 12 turtle nesting sites remain on Saipan.

Sea turtles almost always return to the exact same beach where they were born to lay their eggs. This means sea turtles born elsewhere in the world will not come to lay their eggs in the Marianas.