Our news

 A second chance in life for two more turtles!

“Nondas” and “Aristotelis” were two turtles that have spent over a year in the ARCHELON rehabilitation center. They were successfully released back into the open sea the 21st of June 2011.
They were both taken out by boat with the help of Aqua Divers Club. “Nondas” left after readjusting his buoyancy. “Aristotelis” shot straight for the bottom making his extended stay worthwhile.

 2011 Lakonikos Gulf field program underway

Once again ARCHELON, The Sea Turtle Protection Society of Greece, is welcoming back its volunteers in the Lakonikos Gulf field program. The reproduction activities of the Caretta caretta in key locations are being systematically recorded, and the information serves as an indication of nesting activity in the wider area. Along with data collection, all nests which are located are protected from natural predators.

 Oh where, oh where are the sea turtle eggs?

ARCHELON, the Sea Turtle Protection Society of Greece, is a non-governmental, non-profit organization funded by donations from the public. We do not have the ability to cover all the nesting areas in Greece, and unfortunately no government agency involves itself with the protection of sea turtles.

 The Agiannakis Environmental Station is revived once again

The Agiannakis Environmental Station was established in 2001 by ARCHELON in cooperation with the Greek Railways Organization and the Municipality of Avlonas.
The neglected Railway Station building was renovated and appropriately developed based on the financial support of the European Commission program Life-Nature.
It continues to operate by ARCHELON in collaboration with GAIAOSE (subsidiary company of the Greek Railways Organization) and support of the Trifilia Municipality.

 A new beginning for “Damaskinia” and “Marilena”

Since the beginning of 2011 we have been recording a high number of stranded turtles from all over the coasts of Greece.
We also received an unusual high number of turtles at the rescue centre. 7 turtles were sent to Glyfada over the course of 3 days. Unfortunately one dies on arrival and another passed away after a week. 
The best news of the past weeks is we were able to release our first three turtles of the year!

 Smaro – The first happy

Perhaps every time that we say goodbye to a turtle which weve helped return to its blue ocean home we feel a small satisfaction and, at the same time, an extra need to continue our work, contributing in this way one small piece to the protection of the planets biodiversity. Perhaps, riding on the shell of a turtle which is leaving us, we see our own hopes for a better world to travel with her and to pass on to future generations.

 Introducing volunteerism and sea turtles to children

A very unforgettable Saturday Afternoon Story Hour for our young friends took place on 14 May at the Pataki Bookstore in Athens. Many young readers were at the presentation of the book (Pauls turtles) by Sofia Kalantzakou.

 ARCHELON volunteers receive award from OTE Employees Cultural Association

On 26 May, at the 36th Conference of the OTE Employees Cultural Association in Zakynthos, ARCHELON was awarded a plaque for their contributions to the protection of Caretta caretta and to the field of volunteerism. The award was presented to the Coordinator of the Zakynthos programme, Smaro Touliatou.

 First Caretta nest spotted in Kyparissia Bay!

The 2011 Caretta sea turtle nesting season officially began on 28 May, eight days later than in 2010, when the first nest was located. The Kyparissia volunteer group, under the direction of Brian Ground, located and protected the nest in the area of Vounaki, South Kyparissian Gulf.
The finding marks the beginning of this years season of sea turtle study and protection, as mandated by Greek, European Union, and international law.
Lets hope that this year will be better, and that the trend of fewer nests each year in the coastal nesting areas – which is a result of human actions – will not continue. ARCHELON, with its approximately 500 volunteers from all over the world, will continue to try to protect both the turtles and their nests.

 'Explosion' of arrivals at the Rescue Centre

Along with the change of the weather and the coming of summer, more sea turtles arrive in the waters of our country, either to reproduce or to feed. When all ones life is a journey and the destination itself has the same importance as the way there, one probably cant help but have constant adventures.

 23 May, World Turtle Day and five simple ways to protect sea turtles!

On 23 May 2011, the eleventh annual World Turtle Day is celebrated.
Turtles all over the world face huge obstacles to survival. Sea Turtles in particular are threatened with extinction, and officially appear in the Red Book of Greek Endangered Animals.
Every day, each of us makes choices about what were going to eat or buy, and how were going to spend our time. Lets look at five simple things we can all do to protect sea turtles, which are so very vulnerable and threatened today.

 31st Annual Symposium on Sea Turtle Biology and Conservation

This year, the symposium took place in the USA in the city of San Diego in California. As stated by its president, Jeffrey Seminoff, “the Symposium has reached out to a broad range of sea turtle enthusiasts over the years, including researchers, conservation practitioners, educators, industry, and the general public”.

 A group of sixth grade pupils witness the degradation of our environment as a result of road construction

On Saturday, April 2nd 2011, a group of sixth grade pupils visited the Environmental Centre at Agiannaki, Messinia on a one-day educational school trip.
After attending the Centres educational presentation, pupils had a chance to experience a unique kind of lesson, one in which they witnessed the problems faced by sea turtles firsthand. As they walked towards the Gulf of Kyparissia (the second most important nesting beach of Mediterranean sea turtles), they saw road-building vehicles at work. The machines were destroying the highly significant sand dune ecosystem and using the sand for the construction of the road.

 The Sea Turtle Rescue Centre in Glyfada and the Turtles of the Aegean Sea.

The Sea Turtle Rescue Centre was built by ARCHELON in 1994 with the help of the Municipality of Glyfada, where it is located. Injured turtles are sent here from all coastal areas of Greece with the help of fishermen, locals, and the port police who find them and arrange their transportation.
There are currently 15 turtles at the Sea Turtle Rescue Centre, with a variety of injuries and durations of stay. The following paragraphs are a short presentation of 8 turtles which were found in the Northern, Central and Southern Aegean Sea, written by the volunteers who treat them.

 Turtles from Western Greece currently treated at the Rescue Centre in Glyfada

Most sea turtles are injured by being accidentally caught in fishing nets or on large fishing hooks. A significant number is further injured by deliberate injuries from the fishermen that catch them, and these injuries are mostly on the head. Some fishermen deliver injured sea turtles to the port police, while others put them back in the water to be found later on the nearby coasts. Those who are lucky enough are found while they are still alive and with the help of locals and the port police they are transferred to the Sea Turtle Rescue Centre in Glyfada. All injured turtles are given a name by the people who find them or by the volunteers that receive them and attend to their treatment. Some turtles are adopted by people who wish to support our work financially; this is significant help to our difficult and expensive task, since the government and its agencies which are responsible for these animals offer very little financial help.


ARCHELON took part in the tour for the European Year of Volunteering of 2011 with its representatives mr. Theodoros Benos Palmer, ms. Theoni Karkoulia and the voluntary contribution of ms. Barbara Donou.
The event entitled "Environmental Protection and Animal Protection" organized by the General Secretariat of Youth was held on Monday, March 21, 2011 at the Technopolis, Gazi in Athens.