ATCN News

June 1, 2006

Batagur baska Holding Facility Update
Sre Ambel, Cambodia

Priorities

  • Hatchling holdings
  • Source filtered water
  • Construction of secure cage
  • Staffing

Hatchling holding

  • Eight plastic tubs (40cm x 74cm) were purchased and six turtles placed in each.
  • A water depth of 7cm was provided and tubs were tilted to provide a shallow end for resting and a deep end for feeding.
  • A small Tupperware container (filled with rocks) and a ramp attached will be provided to allow the turtles a place to rest/haul out.
  • Lids were placed on top of the tubs over the shallow end to provide the turtles with some cover.
  • Tubs will be thoroughly cleaned once a day using washing-up liquid and spot cleaned at the end of the day to remove any feces.
  • Turtles are currently being fed twice a day morning glory but a varied diet will be provided soon.
  • Hatchlings were housed outdoors on the balcony of the owner?s house to allow for adequate exposure to sunlight then brought indoors at night until the secure cage is complete.
  • A guard and turtle keeper has been hired.

Hatchling set up

Holding tubs

Hatchlings

Structure

  • A generator, water pump, 32m PVC pipe, 34m hose were purchased and installed at the facility.
  • Two filters will be installed. One removes sediments and the second is a carbon filter which removes chlorine, odor and smell.
  • Currently only the sediment filter was installed. The carbon filter had some hardware missing, so will be installed during the next trip.
  • A temporary 150 L water storage tank was purchased until the main 2000L water tank and stand has been installed.
  • All water now being used for the hatchlings is filtered ground water.
  • The pool used in the past for holding turtles will be filled in with soil and the area used for holding the hatchlings containers.

Security cage

  • The area for the security cage was measured and stakes were set in place as markers. The door to the security cage has been moved to the center of the cage and closer to the owner?s house as recommended.
  • A concrete company has been contracted to build the foundation for the cage and juvenile tanks. The job started on 30 May.
  • It has been explained to the concrete company that we need the tanks to be very smooth. Epoxy paint will be added if the concrete is not smooth enough (as recommended).

A fencing company was also contacted and construction will begin this week.

Next stage

  • Once the security cage has been completed, the hatchlings will remain outside.
  • The presence of the turtle keeper during the day and the guard at night will deter any thieves.
  • Shade cloth will be provided to 50% of their area (as recommended), so turtles are not in direct sunlight.
  • The juvenile tanks and the perimeter fence will then be the next to be constructed followed by the cleaning/food prep and keeper staging area.