The Endangered Sada Tortoise


Tortoise. Photo by José Augusto

Everybody knows Sao tome and Principe is rich in animal and marine life. But one of the most interesting stories is that of the Sada turtles.

Beaches around the islands, north, east, and south-east of the country are used by nesting marine turtles. Altogether, five species can be seen in Sao Tomé.

These species are the green turtle, the leatherback, the olive riddley, the hawksbill and the caouanne.

The nesting period is between October and February. It is possible to see females at night digging theirs nests and laying eggs.

A programme to protect a critically endangered tortoisa, locally known as Sada (Hawksbill in English, tartaruga-de-caco in Portuguese) has been set up and sponsored by the Lisbon Oceanarium, the University of Algarve and others.

You can read and English overview and an in depth blog about tortoise life on the islands in Portuguese.

The following video shows some of the tortoises on the island.