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The Phuket Ombudsman’s office yesterday (May 25) hosted turtle release titled ‘Let the Turtles Return to Nature to Restore Ecological Balance’ which saw over 50 turtles released into the sea at Mai Khao Beach.
Hosting the event was Chief of the Phuket Ombudsman’s office, Mr Wittawat Ratchatanan acting on behalf of the President of the Phuket Ombudsman’s office, Mr Boon Tapanadul; along with Secretary General of the Office of the Phuket Ombudsman’s office, Mr Raksagecha Chaechai; Deputy Secretary-General of the Phuket Ombudsman’s, Mr Thavin Inchamnong; together with Phuket Vice Governor, Ms Sivaporn Chuasawas; Deputy Chief of Mai Khao village, Mr Wirat Makaew; Deputy Commander of the Royal Thai Navy Third Area Command, Mr Arkhom Taengon; TAT Phuket Director, Ms Anoma Wongyai, along with government officials and 300 local residents.
The aim of the release was to raise public awareness about the importance of local animal species, and to help conserve the ecological environment at Mai Khao Beach.
General Wittawat explained, “Due to a review of past complaints, the Phuket Ombudsman’s office has been aware of a number of issues relating to environmental management from people in various areas, including the conservation of local animal species.
“Thailand’s marine resources are quickly diminishing, and there are many species that are close to extinction, especially turtles. The quantity of sea turtles has significantly decreased,” he told guests.
“It is happening rapidly, to the point of crisis. Many factors are to blame such as hunting for meat and turtle eggs for consumption, the growth of the urban community, natural changes at beaches, and human activity disturbing coral reefs, which is the habitat of sea turtles. The number of sea turtles which survive to a breeding age is declining rapidly,” General Wittawat said.
“Therefore, the Phuket Ombudsman’s office has organised this event, ‘Let the Turtles Return to Nature to Restore Ecological Balance’ held in conjunction with the Mai Khao Administration Office,Royal Thai Navy Third Area Command and the Tourism Authority of Thailand Phuket office to encourage people to pay closer attention to the conservation of sea turtles.”
Gen Wittawat also said that the event would help communities, entrepreneurs and tourists pay attention to the conservation of natural resources and keep the environment abundant, in order for sea turtles to spawn again in this area for a more balanced and sustainable ecosystem.