DUNGUN: The number of turtle deaths in Terengganu has increased to 55 within the first six months of the year compared to 49 last year, said Terengganu Fisheries Department Director of Resource Management Rosman Rusdy.
He said 99% of these turtles were adults.
"The concern of fishermen for the turtles is still low despite awareness campaigns," he told Bernama Tuesday.
He said investigations found that most of the turtles died after getting snared in fishing gear such as trawl nets.
Rosman said there was a strong possibility that the deaths of some turtles had not been reported to the department.
He said data showed that the waters off Kemaman saw the highest incidence of turtle deaths, followed by the waters off Dungun, Kuala Terengganu and Besut.
The turtle deaths resulted in the loss of about 330 cases of nesting (a turtle nests six times a year) and 33,000 unhatched eggs.
Rosman said that on June 14, a dead adult green turtle was found floating in the waters off Redang Island at about 12.30pm, believed to have been snared in a trawl net.
He said Redang and Perhentian were two islands with the highest number of turtle landings in Terengganu each year.
He said that as of Monday, the department had placed 72,000 green turtle eggs on Redang Island and 910,000 on Perhentian Island under a nesting programme. - Bernama