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Photo-identification of sea turtles
Photo-identification is a non-invasive method that identifies each individual based on durable and unique physical characteristics. The protocol developed by Kelonia uses the design of the scales of turtle head profiles, comparable to human fingerprints. Each profile photo shows whether the turtle is already known or if it is a new individual, not yet identified in the database. Each new photo of a turtle completes its story. Photos are a valuable source of information to better understand the biology of sea turtles, with the aim of ensuring their preservation. This citizen science program, initiated in 2003, works thanks to the contribution of the general public (divers, free divers) who share their observations with scientists.
Note: currently, this tool only offers a search among the sea turtles observed in Reunion Island; in the long term, as part of a future specification, the tool should make it possible to search for photos related to all the Territories/Regions registered in the database)