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The Banyuls tortoise returns to the high seas

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Key figures

  • 15 research professors
  • 19 researchers (CNRS)
  • 94 research support staff
  • 20 PhD sudents and post-students
  • 3 research units


Directeur :

Philippe Lebaron

Responsable administratif :

Christian Fèbvre

Tél. : 04 68 88 73 00 - Fax 04 68 88 16 99

Courriel : directeur@obs-banyuls.fr

UPMC - Laboratoire Arago

Avenue du Fontaulé - BP 44 - 66651


The Banyuls tortoise returns to the high seas

An original project took place on Thursday 29 May on board the Néreis II, one of the ships of the Oceanology Observatory of Banyuls-sur-Mer. Précieuse, the tortoise of the Banyuls-sur-Mer Aquarium, which is well known to the children of the area, returned to the sea.

The young tortoise, which was rescued by the Banyuls-sur-Mer Aquarium a little over three years ago after being captured in a fishing net, had grown well. It was time for her to be free again. She was thus given, after three years of captivity, to a specialist care centre that is part of the Grau-du-Roi Aquarium (CESTMED – Centre for the Study and Protection of Marine Tortoises of the Mediterranean), which readapted her to her natural environment in order for her to be able to released. Under observation for six months, measured from every angle and identified with a ring, this tortoise should return to its fellow tortoises whom we meet from time to time on our shores and thus, participate in the reproduction of the species.

Organised by the Arago Laboratory in Banyuls and the National Office of Hunting and Wildlife, this project was carried out in the presence of representatives of the Marine Reserve of Cerbère-Banyuls, Marine Park Study Mission, Centre for the Study and Protection of Marine Tortoises of the Mediterranean (CESTMED) and Marine Tortoise Network of the French Mediterranean.

Let us wish good speed to this young animal, whose species, threatened for many years, is under international protection.

N.B. : If you find a beached marine tortoise, please contact the National Office of Hunting and Wildlife (04 68 53 01 81) or the Oceanology Observatory of Banyuls-sur-Mer (04 68 88 73 00).