"In 2012, we hatched 570 turtle eggs and the hatchlings were released into their habitats. This year`s target is 1,500 eggs," Rasyidin Prima of the Mukomuko BKSDA said here on Tuesday on behalf of Head of the Bengkulu BKSDA Anggoro Dwi Sujianto.
During the January-March 2013 period, 362 eggs had been hatched and the hatchlings had been released into the nearest habitat.
Three species of turtles live along the coastal area of the Air Hitam and Air Rami reserves in Mukomuko District, namely green turtle (Chelonia mydas), hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata), and olive ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea).
The population of hawksbill and olive ridley turtles is higher than green turtle in Mukomuko, he said.
The two community groups running turtle conservation areas under the supervision of BKSDA Bengkulu are "Penyu Lestari" Group in Retak Ilir village and the Nature and Environment-Loving Youth Group in Air Hitam village, Mukomuko District.
The two community groups have voluntarily helped the turtle conservation because of their concern about the survival of turtles in the district. Turtle eggs are often stolen and traded illegally in the region.