Pham Van Thong who is TSCC’s field research coordinator is the principle investigator for the project of “Distribution, exploitation and basic ecology of Black-breasted Leaf Turtle (Geoemyda spengleri) in Tay Yen Tu National Reserve, Bac Giang Province, Vietnam”.
Geoemyda spengleri, the Black-breasted Leaf Turtle, is a terrestrial chelonian native to montane forests in northern Vietnam, Laos, and southeastern China. Due to its small size and appearance, the species has long been popular in the pet trade. Prior to CITES listing, the species was traded internationally in large numbers. Presently, rampant collection continues in order to meet the domestic demand for pets within Vietnam and other range countries.
Currently, G. spengleri is assessed as Endangered by the IUCN Red List. Unfortunately, little is known about G. spengleri in the wild, particularly within Vietnam. Fundamental habitat, population, and ecological data are nearly non-existent. This lack of information hampers conservation efforts.
The project aims to obtain the data of species ecology, distribution and threats in order to recommendation to authority and policy makers to be better in conservation the species in Vietnam.