Vera Nieuwenhuis is a professional photographer based in New York. She spent two weeks with us in Kemaman, Malaysia, to photo-document our river terrapin research, conservation, education and outreach activities.
Is there any volunteer program at the Ma’ Daerah Turtle Sanctuary? I would like to visit the Ma’ Daerah Turtle Sanctuary one day, how should I go about it?
Yes, there is. During the peak turtle nesting season, which is from early May until end of August each year, the Ma’Daerah Turtle Sanctuary runs a weekly 3D2N programme called Weekend with the Turtles.
The WWF-Malaysia turtle teams work at 3 project sites, and they are in Padang Kamunting and the surrounding beaches in Melaka, as well as Kerteh and Setiu in Terengganu. We work closely with the Department of Fisheries on several fronts, which include beach patrolling and hatchery management, egg buy-back, training the rangers and egg collectors, scientific research, as well as community education and awareness.
As the Team Leader for WWF-Malaysia’s Terengganu Turtle Conservation, my work broadly involves ensuring our team delivers the project outputs and activities in accordance with the agreed work plan, time frame and within the prescribed budget. We also update our funders regularly either in writing or personally, and sometimes both, on the status of our project.
As a media practitioner, it is heartening to see that local journalists i.e. those in Terengganu in particular are taking a keen interest on the issue which is at their doorstep.
Turtle eggs are notaphrodisiacs. Scientists have analysed the nutrient content of turtle eggs and found them to be no better than chicken eggs.
It was an amazing experience, being able to witness the nesting of a Green turtle. First, the turtle digs a body pit big enough for her to be comfortable in. Then, she carves an egg chamber for the eggs. When she is ready, she lays her eggs, 2-3 eggs at a time, and then she covers her egg chamber. Before leaving the nest behind, she sand bathes for about an hour, in an attempt to camouflage her nest. The entire nesting process may easily take 3 hours to complete!
I have never been good with kids. I’ve always thought that kids were annoying. I couldn’t even bring myself to carry a baby. They will never listen to you and they wouldn’t do anything except play. Putting my ego away, I challenged myself to join TCS as an intern and SURPRISINGLY it was the best decision that I’ve made for my life.
To many people, it is actually quite a “crazy” thing to do, i.e. to go to another country and spend time volunteering for a local NGO. For me, I just felt that it was a very “natural” decision that my instinct told me to make as soon as I found out that TCS was looking for a few interns. I was so excited when I was shortlisted!
We organized a 3D2N programme for the students of People-To-People-International (PTPI) from Sri KDU Secondary School in conjunction with their annual Global Youth Service Day. Our activities included a gotong-royong (community service) and a Turtle Awareness Programme, and it was facilitated by two teachers, Ms. Chuah and Mr. Davey.
My friend and I immediately signed up for this programme as soon as we were notified of it. Even though we didn’t really know what to expect, we seized the opportunity and got a shot at a lovely and unforgettable experience.
Edward Lim and Danial Tiang were our first volunteers who participated in our Kemaman River Terrapin Volunteer Programme, which was rolled out at the beginning of the River Terrapin nesting season. Following is a reflection of Edward’s experiences in a River Terrapin project, and in life.
Even paper trash poses a threat to sea turtles, warns environmentalist after participants of a team-building event fail to clean up after their function.
Walaupun dilindungi sepenuhnya di bawah Akta Hidupan Liar 2010, sikap manusia, proses pembangunan, pencemaran dan perubahan alam termasuk banjir besar menjadi penyumbang yang mengancam masa depan tuntung, malah boleh membawa kepada kepupusan.
Populasi tuntung di enam sungai utama di Terengganu semakin pupus selepas jumlah telur yang menetas mencatatkan penurunan setiap tahun.
Populasi tuntung sungai di daerah Kemaman kini semakin diancam kepupusan, malah semakin kritikal apabila jumlah telur yang ditetaskan ibu tuntung kini berkurangan setiap tahun.
For World Turtle Day, Chen Pelf Nyok played tour guide to six inquisitive families which travelled all the way to Kemaman, Terengganu, from the city.
TCS celebrates World Turtle Day on 23rd May with the local community in Kuala Terengganu with lots of turtle-themed activities and games.