With Assam being home to 20 species of freshwater turtles and tortoises out of 29 species present in India, about 70 hatchlings of the Black Softshell and Indian Softshell turtles which bred in the ponds of two temples in Assam have been released in the Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary.
According to Tejas Mariswamy, Guwahati Zoo, Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), while the turtles were bred in Hayagriva Madhava Temple situated in Hajo and Ugratara Temple in Guwahati, they were nurtured at conservation facility at Assam State Zoo.
"Unfortunately, 70 per cent of these species of turtles are threatened with extinction. It is a matter of immense joy and pride that this year we released 70 hatchlings Black Softshell turtle and Indian Softshell turtle, in the Pobitora WLS on Monday," he said.
This was a joint effort of Assam Forest Department, Hayagriva Madhava Temple Management Committee, Ugratara Temple Management, Turtle Survival Alliance and Help Earth.