Conservation of Marine Turtles in the Mediterranean Region

Enhancing the protection & conservation of Marine Turtles in the Mediterranean Region by reducing human-induced direct mortality 






     About Sea Turtles

Three sea turtle species are found in the Mediterranean. The loggerhead (Caretta caretta) and green turtle (Chelonia mydas) nest here, and the huge leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea) is an occasional visitor. In the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species Green Turtles are listed as globally endangered and Loggerhead Turtles (Mediterranean sub-population) as least concerned, but conservation dependent. In summer, sea turtles nest on sandy beaches. Loggerheads mainly nest in Greece, Turkey, Libya and Cyprus, and in smaller numbers in Egypt, Lebanon, Israel, Syria, Tunisia and Italy. Green turtles mainly nest in Turkey, Cyprus and Syria, while a few nests are recorded in Lebanon, Egypt and Israel. Important feeding and overwintering areas have been identified, however further research is needed.





Sea turtles are considered as an indicator species for marine biodiversity and have populated Earth for over 100 million years. It is therefore critical that they are protected and preserved. Although they have natural predators, the greatest threat to these ancient creatures are impacts and disturbances by human activities:

  • habitat loss & degradation (tourism, coastal and marine development)
  • pollution (marine litter, ...)
  • collision with vessels
  • fisheries (bycatch, illegal fishing techniques, intentional killing)
  • exploitation (for consumption or production of artefacts)
  • climate change
  • exploitation of marine resources, specifically oil and gas.


The Project “Conservation of Marine Turtles in the Mediterranean Region” aims at the following objective: to enhance the protection and conservation of Marine Turtles in the Mediterranean Region by reducing human-induced direct mortality.

Activities take place in 13 Countries: Albania, Algeria, Cyprus, Egypt, France, Greece, Italy (Sardinia), Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Spain, Tunisia and Turkey from June 2017 to May 2020 (phase 1).


Map of geographic scope of project activities


Project Activities: