Population data & Conservation reports

What we do

Population data

Important information about the biology and population composition of sea turtles, and the migration routes in the Mediterranean Sea are collected from our fieldwork projects. Tagging and identification of already tagged individuals occurs on the nesting beaches of Zakynthos, Crete and the Peloponnese. This helps to find out their distribution in the Mediterranean after they have nested. The identification of migration routes is carried out with the help of satellite tags on selected individuals.

Tagging is also carried out in the feeding grounds of Amvrakikos Gulf, in order to investigate the growth rates of turtles living there.

Important information on the threats and pressures at sea from all coastal areas is collected through the nationwide Rescue Network. All turtles released from the Rescue Centre are tagged.

During the last two decades, it has been possible to genetically group the sea turtles populations which reproduce in Greek beaches through respective research.

What we do

Conservation reports

  1. Kyparissia Bay

    Conservation efforts at the nesting habitat of Caretta caretta in Kyparissia Bay, Greece

    Download the 2023 report
  2. Download the 2022 report
  3. Zakynthos

    Conservation efforts at the nesting habitat of Caretta caretta in Laganas Bay, Zakynthos, Greece.

    Download the 2023 report
  4. Download the 2022 report
  5. Crete

    Conservation efforts at the nesting habitats of Caretta caretta in Crete, Greece

    Download the 2023 report
  6. Download the 2022 report
  7. South Peloponnese

    Conservation efforts at the nesting habitats of Caretta caretta in south Peloponnese, Greece

    Download the 2022 report

Tourists and turtles– “TUI Turtle Aid Greece” project by TUI Care Foundation and ARCHELON

In the face of continuous touristic activity combined with coastal erosion and climate change, there can be no future for sea turtles in a number of nesting sites, without more active involvement of the touristic sector. Tourism may significantly affect turtle populations, however it can also be a force for positive change when managed responsibly.

For four decades, ARCHELON has been at the forefront of protecting sea turtle nesting beaches in Zakynthos, Kyparissia, Lakonikos, Koroni, Rethymno, Chania, and Messara. Many of these areas, diligently monitored by volunteers each year, are increasingly affected by tourism. Zakynthos and Crete, in particular, have transformed into globally renowned tourist destinations. In a bid to minimize this impact, ARCHELON has undertaken public awareness initiatives, including presentations in hotels, information kiosks, and directly on nesting beaches for the last 30 years. Amongst others, TUI Care Foundation has supported our public awareness and information activities in a number of past projects.

Starting from the summer of 2023, ARCHELON implements the three year project “TUI Turtle Aid Greece” by TUI Care Foundation and ARCHELON, which includes, amongst other actions, an innovative component: the pilot implementation of a Turtle-Friendly Certification program for hotels, that aims to promote the protection of sea turtles and their habitats by engaging the hospitality and tourism sector. It encourages sustainable development in tourism, offers guidelines for businesses committed to turtle conservation, and helps tourists make eco-friendly choices when selecting hotels and excursions. This certification system is designed collaboratively by the TUI Care Foundation, TUI Turtle-Aid partners, and tourism stakeholders to ensure clear communication and a business-oriented approach. Project Partners in this process include Project Biodiversity in Cape Verde, DEKAMER in Turkey, and ARCHELON in Greece, all dedicated to sea turtle conservation.

ARCHELON is undertaking a proactive role in piloting this initiative, with a specific focus on hotels situated on nesting beaches in Rethymno and Chania. In collaboration with ECOCLUB, who are providing the expertise of external sustainable tourism specialists, the project is expected to support and guide the selected hotels through the implementation process. Furthermore, the project is supporting activities such as nest protection on heavily frequented beaches and the enhancement of public awareness campaigns. Additionally, an ARCHELON research team is to conduct a survey of sea turtle nesting activity on the island of Rhodes, contributing to the ongoing Sustainability Lab Initiative on Rhodes, in collaboration with TUI Care Foundation.

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