Vote for Island Conservation to help us win a $5000 grant for sea turtle conservation on Loosiep Island, Ulithi Atoll.
Island Conservation has been afforded the exciting opportunity of participating in the Island Restoration Network’s Summer Sea Turtle Sustainability contest (vote here). This contest presents Island Conservation with an opportunity to receive a $5,000 grant to be put towards our project on Loosiep Island, Ulithi Atoll.
Currently, Island Conservation is working with the local community, the Ulithi Falalop Community Action Program (UFCAP), The Council of Ten, and One People One Reef (OPOR) to remove invasive species from the Loosiep Island. Loosiep is one of five Turtle Islands which serve as the largest nesting grounds for Micronesia’s Green Sea Turtle population.
The community of Ulithi has historically managed the islands’ terrestrial and marine resources using traditional methods, but in recent years, they have implemented a science-based monitoring program for Green Sea Turtles and coral reefs with support from our partners at OPOR. The program brings these methods together to help adaptively manage local resources and protect the local population of sea turtles. Sadly, one of the greatest threats to the sea turtle population is predation by invasive rats, monitor lizards, and feral pigs which dig up nests and predate hatchlings.
Island Conservation and our partners planned to remove invasive rats in 2020 but determined it was necessary to postpone this phase of the project until 2021 due to the ongoing pandemic. Despite the delay, the local community plans to move forward and complete the removal of feral pigs from Loosiep Island in 2020. Removing these invasive species from Loosiep will ensure the vitality of the sea turtle nesting grounds and the health of the near-shore coral reef ecosystem.
If awarded, these funds will help Island Conservation develop biosecurity workshops for the local community and purchase biosecurity supplies such as sealed containers for boats to prevent the reintroduction of invasive species. This work will help ensure the long-term success of the project and permanent protection for the local sea turtle population from invasive species.
You can vote for Island Conservation and help us win the Summer Sea Turtle Sustainability Content. Voting starts on May 4th, 2020, and ends on June 1st. Voters must be at least 13 years of age.
Featured photo: Ulithi Community member monitoring the coral reef. Credit: James Reardon
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