Mozambique’s Quirimbas National Park authorities in Cabo Delgado province said on Sunday they have arrested of over 20 Tanzanian fishermen for allegedly decimating marine turtle in the region.”The park authorities are intensifying maritime surveillance which has resulted in the arrest of more than 20 fishermen of Tanzanian nationality,” Quirimbas National Park said in a statement.
The department said the capture of sea turtles is currently under investigation to discover what led local communities to consume the flesh of this endangered marine species.
The park authorities said they are concerned about the massive influx of poachers from neighbouring Tanzania who are destroying various marine resources.
In addition to the marine area, poachers are also decimating several species of animals in the terrestrial zone of Quirimbas National Park.
The Mozambican coast hosts five species of marine turtles: the green (Chelonia mydas), olive ridley Lepidochelys olivacea), loggerhead (Caretta caretta), hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata) and leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea) which are listed as either endangered or critically endangered by the World Conservation Union (IUCN).
The killing of marine turtles and possession of their eggs is an offence under the Forest and Wildlife Regulation.