14 Aug 2000
This was the first specialised study on sea turtles in Liberia.
Working through the SAMFU Foundation, a non profit, non governmental organisation in Liberia, Mons. Robert Tikpor is promoting participatory and sustainable natural resource management. The Foundation is working to identify forests and biologically diverse areas and endangered species, and to develop community-led development plans that will be implemented by the communities with inputs from other stakeholders including the government. This work is all the more critical because of the recovery process following the civil war of the 1990s.
SAMFU has established that although several species of sea turtles nest on the shores of Liberia, there is wide-scale slaughter of these nesting turtles as well as those captured at sea. There is an urgent need for a baseline survey of the turtle population to establish key areas of abundance and diversity with a goal of initiating a sustainable participatory community management plan for the turtles. Local education is seen as a vital component, leading to sustained turtle conservation practice.