Category Archives: International Year of Biodiversity

Tropicbird and chick – #inacousin minute

Here is the first of our videos that will give you a peek at the goings on at the Cousin Island Special Reserve. In this video, it takes some tricks for this tropicbird to get to the well hidden chick. Sometimes all it takes is a little limbo limbo limbo…

Video courtesy of

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The turtles are back

It’s hawksbill turtle nesting season once again here on Cousin…

Female turtle coming in to nest. (Peter Chadwick)

Female turtle coming in to nest. (Peter Chadwick)

And so its tagging…

Tags are checked or applied on flippers for monitoring. (Peter Chadwick)

Tags are checked or applied on flippers for monitoring. (Peter Chadwick)

…and measuring time.

data such as size of turtle is collected (Peter Chadwick)

data such as size of turtle is collected (Peter Chadwick)

Cousin has one of the longest hawksbill turtle monitoring programme on the western Indian Ocean.  Tags applied to the turtles’ front flippers are used to identify individuals and to provide an estimate of the size of the nesting population. Other information such as the size of the turtle and tracks are also noted and the location of any nests are marked and recorded. Turtle nesting season ends in February.

Nature Watch: A whole series of stories on Seychelles wildlife..

Here is a heads up about some interesting radio programmes we have uploaded on the education pages on our website and which you and those younger ones in your life might find interesting. The radio programmes were broadcast on Radio Seychelles between 1986-1987 (!) and featured Nirmal Shah, Nature Seychelles CEO, explaining the wonders of the Seychelles natural world, from sea cucumbers to earthworms and to Bib Delos – the water striders. Have fun listening, many of the listeners back in those days certainly did.

They are here:

Tell us what you think… is this something you would like to have on the blog?

World governments fail to deliver on 2010 biodiversity target

“Governments have failed to deliver on the commitments they made in 2002: biodiversity is still being lost as fast as ever”  Says Dr Stuart Butchart, of BirdLife International.

Listen to Dr Stuart Butchart being interviewed about the failure to meet the 2010 Biodiversity targets

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More of this story at BirdLife

Charity website praises Cousin Island – a not for profit site dedicated to encouraging internet users to make regular and more varied donations to charities, has given Cousin Island an excellent review. Citing the Island’s conservation success, the site, in article titled, “From The Brink: Extinction To Paradise” says that Cousin “provides real hope that all is not lost for those species that teeter on the precipice of existence”.  Thanks

You can read more about it here

Saving Biodiversity Saves Life

The United Nations launched 2010 as the International Year of Biodiversity (IYB) on 12 January in Berlin while calling the world to action to slow down the rate of biodiversity loss. In a message to the world UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said, “Business as usual is not an option.” Here is a powerful message that everyone needs to see courtesy of the official IYB website.

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Among activities to be carried out during this year are raising awareness on the importance of conserving biodiversity for human well-being and promoting understanding of the economic value of biodiversity. Dr. Ahmed Djoghlaf, the Executive Secretary of the UN’s Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), running this global campaign says, “Biodiversity is life and without biodiversity, there is no life on earth. It’s our food. It’s our water. It’s our forest, our fish. So without biodiversity, there is no life. So biodiversity is about our life and life on earth”.

The BirdLife Partnership (Nature Seychelles is BirdLife’s patner in Seychelles) is an official partner of the International Year of Biodiversity. BirdLife’s work on birds, habitats, and communities has helped to keep track of losses and successes in biodiversity conservation. For instance, Seychelles has proven through its conservation successes with habitat restoration for endemic bird species that protecting birds is good for other species too. “There is a ripple effect that benefits people and their livelihoods. Similarly a reversal is interlinked, loss of biodiversity ultimately affects us.” Says Nirmal Shah, Nature Seychelles Chief Executive.

During the year, progress towards reducing biodiversity loss will be reviewed and new proposals and targets to counter further loss set. Already the World Conservation Union (IUCN) is sounding the alarm over loss of species. “The abundance of species has declined. Species present in rivers, lakes and marshlands have declined by 50%. Declines are alarming in amphibians, mammals, birds in agricultural lands, corals and commonly harvested fish species.” Says IUCN.

A high percentage of this loss is occurring due to human activities. Habitat loss and degradation are the leading threats so is climate change. Species and ecosystems need space to develop and recover. There’s a worldwide call to action. Governments are being asked to balance economic development with maintaining and improving ecosystems and habitats. Farmers are being asked to develop farm diversity and reduce the use of pesticides and fertilizer and adopt organic agriculture practices. 75% of all fisheries are fully exploited or over-fished, therefore there is a need for sustainable use of fisheries or there will simply be no fish left for tomorrow. And climate change has to be combated to ensure that species survive. At individual level, such actions as simply not wasting, and re-using and re-cycling whatever is used can help to conserve biodiversity.

To contribute to creating awareness during the International Year for Biodiversity, the Januarry – June 2010 Zwazo, Nature Seychelles conservation magazine will carry articles and information about biodiversity conservation efforts in the Seychelles.