A turtle believed to be of the same species as the one that lived in Hoan Kiem Lake in Hanoi was found in the Dong Mo Lake outside the city in 2007. (Photo courtesy of biologist Ha Dinh Duc) Hanoi (VNA) - A new turtle with an appearance similar to that of the turtle that lived in Hoan Kiem Lake in Hanoi have been found. But according to an expert, it is yet to be confirmed if they are of the same species. The Asia Turtle Programme (ATP) announced last week it had found a turtle of the same species as the Hoan Kiem turtle in a town north of Hanoi using environmental DNA testing (eDNA) techniques. ATP considered this “a ground-breaking discovery” since the last turtle that lived in Hoan Kiem Lake – one of the last of the Yangtze giant softshell turtles, belonging to the species Rafetus swinhoei – died in January 2016. The species now has just three living specimens, two in China and one in a lake outside Hanoi. If the turtle found by ATP is of … [Read more...] about Species of newfound turtle yet to be confirmed
Softshell turtle care
With the sad death of Hanoi’s legendary Hoan Kiem Turtle - Cu Rua (Great Grandfather Turtle) - this month, many citizens of Hanoi seem at a loss as to what to do next. The passing of the old turtle has taken a little of the magic from the heart of Hanoi. But it has also left the future survival of the entire species that Cu Rua belonged to in doubt, the Swinhoe Softshell Turtle (Rafetus swinhoei) is now only represented by three known living individuals globally (two in China and the other in Vietnam). Releasing another animal into Hoan Kiem Lake There have been recent news stories focused on whether a replacement turtle should be put into the lake to maintain the legend in some way. The only other known remaining Swinhoe Softshell Turtle in Vietnam, which inhabits Dong Mo Lake, west of Hanoi, has been suggested. For many important reasons we view this as presently not a viable option and we encourage a discussion of the risks and alternatives. When considering moving any … [Read more...] about What next for the Hoan Kiem Turtle?