By: L.N. Reklai
January 24, 2017 (Palau) A bill to put a complete ban on harvesting of the hawksbill turtle or “Ngasch” has been proposed as Senate bill 10-5.
The bill proposed by Senator Phillip Reklai, Senator John Skebong, Senator Rukebai Inabo, Senator Aric Nakamura, Senator Stevenson Kuartei, Senator Mark Rudimch and Senator Kerai Mariur, amends the existing law which put size limitations and seasons for harvesting of sea turtles.
The bill amends the law to specifically put a complete stop to harvesting of “Ngasch” regardless of the size of the shell or the time of year.
In the past two years, sights of hawksbill turtles or “ngasch” dead or dying with their whole shell removed became common due to rise in demand from the Chinese market for the shell of this particular species of sea turtle.
Hawksbill sea turtle or ngasch is on the IUCN red list of critically endangered species and on the CITES list of endangered species.
Solicitation for comments on this bill is on-going and public is encouraged to send their comments to the Senate on this bill. [/restrict]