Followed by the death of the only Pinta Island Giant Tortoise, Yangtze Giant Soft-shell turtle (Rafetus swinhoei), has become the most critically endangered terrapin species, with only two individuals left in China.
The Yangtze Giant Soft-shell turtles, along with South China Tigers and the Chinese River Dolphin, have been defined as “Zombie species” by the scientists. It is a tragedy caused by humans. A “Zombie species” is defined by the scientists, which means that there are only a few very old individuals left in the species but unable to give birth in order to form a new generation. Hence “Zombie species” are only waiting for extinction.
For these two Yangtze giant soft-shell turtles, experts from China and abroad have both tried to take advantage of artificial insemination but failed. Now, they have been under great pressure to seek more individuals in the wild in order to protect such a precious and unique species.
China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF) is an independent non-profit organization dedicated to environmental protection and biodiversity conservation, and cooperates with wide ranges of internationally recognized environmental organizations. CBCGDF also pays close attention to protecting Yangtze giant soft-shell turtles and conducting research on it. Furthermore, it has sent delegates to establish cooperative relationship with Suzhou Zoo, arranged volunteers to seek potential wild individuals, and launched a fundraising project on the protection of Yangtze giant soft-shell turtles on Tencent public welfare platform.
All in all, we would love to involve everyone to work together to protect these critically endangered turtles.