The 5th International Sea Turtles Symposium took place in Kusadasi. The symposium was organized to stress the importance of the sea turtles for Kusadasi and other ecosystems, and is met with great interest.
There are beaches in Kusadasi where the sea turtles, also called Caretta carettas, have built their nests to lay their eggs. It’s important that these nests are protected, in order for the baby turtles to hatch and find their way back to the sea safely. At the symposium subjects such as the reproduction of sea turtles, their habitat and their genetics were discussed.
The 5th International Sea Turtles Symposium was organized by the ADU in cooperation with the Directorate of Nature Protection and National Parks. At the symposium Kerim Gencoglu, the director of the Nature Protection and National Parks Fourth Region, held a speech and stated:
In 2009, there was a circulary letter published about the protection of sea turtles. Several universities have worked on the treatment of injured sea turtles and their rehabilitation and set up rehabilitation centres. Within the borders of our Directorate, the coastlines of Ekincik, Dalyan, Dalaman, Sarıgerme and Fethiye are important nesting areas for sea turtles. Starting from 2010 we placed satellite devices on the sea turtles to be able to track their feeding areas, and where they spend the winter. This provides us with a lot of information. We conduct obeservation and protection projects together with universities and NGO’s. At the Dalyan Iztuzu beach, the Sea Turtles Research Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre (DEKAMER), many successful treatments and educational activities are continued.
Sea Turtles Protected by International Agreement
When we see that there are international agreements made to protect the sea turtles, we realize even more how important they are. ECODOSD, an association for nature protection, continues their work in Kusadasi and its surrounding areas.
The Mayor of Kusadasi, Ozer Kayali, who also attended the symposium, drew the attention of the participants to the boards, recently placed on the beach, to inform and build awareness. He stated that Kusadasi keeps working on the ownership of and awareness about the protection of sea turtles.
The Only Symposium Organized about Sea Turtles at the Location Where They Live
The Sea Turtles Research Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre (DEKAMER), treats and releases the injured sea turtles back into the sea.
At the 5th International Sea Turtles Symposium, the director of DEKAMER, Prof. Dr. Yakup Kaska stressed on the fact that never before a symposium about the sea turtles, who live in the Mediterranean region, had actually been organized at any Mediterranean country before. On the subject of Caretta carettas, and their importance, Kaska stated:
Several universities conduct various researches at 21 beaches in Turkey. Every two, three years, we come together and present our findings. We also discuss about what to do the coming years. We research why the sea turtles start nesting at new areas, like Kusadasi, considering the known fact that sea turtles always return to their place of hatching. We put together this symposium together with about 30 science commission members from 15 universities, 100 research scientists and 50 representatives from NGO’s. We think that by organizing this 5th sea turtles symposium, we are creating more awareness about them. Turkey is the richest country of the Mediterranean, when it comes to the number of sea turtles. We will keep organizing this symposium, every 3 to 4 years.