Huge Hicatee bust in Belize River Valley

The Fisheries Department made a huge bust today with a total of 16 Hickatee turtles. Two men were caught separately in the Belize River Valley Area with the turtles. Hickatee’s are ranked Critically Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List  and in Belize, the hicatee closing season is May 1st to May 31st. However, even though it is now seven days into June, the men are arrested because Belize also has a take limit; meaning that no individual should have more than three hicatees per person and no vehicle should be carrying more than five hicatees at a time. 16 hicatees between two persons is well over the allowed number. There are also limits on the size of females that can be killed. In addition, Belize Fisheries regulations state that no person shall buy or sell Hickatee turtle; it is only for personal consumption as the main threat to the Hickatee is over hunting. The two men caught with the hicatees are expected to be charged tomorrow for the offenses.   vlcsnap-2016-06-08-07h54m01s168 vlcsnap-2016-06-08-07h53m59s570 vlcsnap-2016-06-08-07h53m56s334

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