The Department of Fisheries and Marine Research (DFMR), under the framework of the Pandoteira project, released two sea turtles on Wednesday September 14th, 2022. The release took place at the Cyprus Marine Aquaculture Research Centre (CyMARC) of DFMR in Meneou – which also functions as a First Aid, Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre for injured and sick sea turtles.
“Damianos” and “Kostis” are two adult male green turtles (Chelonia mydas). They were found injured a few months ago in the marine area of Limassol and were transported for treatment to the Sea Turtle First Aid, Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre of DFMR. After receiving treatment for a few months, the sea turtles are able to swim freely and return to their natural environment.
Representatives of diving schools and divers were invited to participate in the release event. During the event the participants were informed about the sea turtles that can be found in Cyprus, as well as about the proper behaviour divers should exhibit underwater when encountering a sea turtle during their underwater activities. In addition, participants were also informed about the importance of the Natura 2000 network, with a special focus on the protection of sea turtles.
The Pandoteira project, under which the event was organized, focuses on managing the Natura 2000 network in Cyprus. Its purpose is to make the Natura 2000 network more effective and functional, as well as sustainable. The project is co-funded by the EU’s LIFE Programme, the coordinating beneficiary is the Department of Environment, while the consortium also includes 13 associated beneficiaries from public bodies, academic institutions, non-governmental organisations and private companies.
Find out more about the Pandoteira project here.