Two Oceans Aquarium Unveils Turtle Conservation Centre Set for 2026 Opening

The Two Oceans Aquarium has announced that a new stand-alone Turtle Conservation Centre will open its doors in 2026. The turtle rehabilitation facility is part of the V&A Waterfront’s Granger Bay precinct improvement project.

“The Two Oceans Aquarium Foundation is thrilled to share this news with our ocean-loving community” said Ann Lamont, Two Oceans Aquarium Foundation Executive Chairperson.  “Our new Turtle Conservation Centre will allow us to expand our existing turtle conservation work by bringing under one roof turtle education, research, conservation, veterinary science and tourism. Importantly, members of the public will now be able to see first-hand the work we do with turtles, as this currently takes place only behind the scenes at the Two Oceans Aquarium”.

A first of this scale in Africa, the new Turtle Conservation Centre will include a turtle rehabilitation hospital, education facilities, ample space for exhibition displays, a restaurant and a shop.

“The new facility will showcase various species of turtles in our care. It will provide us with the opportunity to share information about turtles and the marine ecosystems they call home, to demonstrate the care and attention needed to nurse turtles back to health, and to appeal to the public to make changes in their lives which will benefit not only the turtles, but all inhabitants of the ocean” explained Lamont.

“While our present facilities at the Aquarium have served us well, we have reached capacity as the number of turtles needing rehabilitation and long-term care is increasing every year,” said Talitha Noble-Trull, Two Oceans Aquarium Foundation Turtle Conservation Centre Manager. “Our work with turtles is critical, given the impact of climate change and plastic pollution threatening all seven species. We will now have the resources to assist with turtle rescues around the entire African coast and not just South Africa”.

Over the last 20 years the Two Oceans Aquarium has successfully released over 1000 turtles back into the ocean. These include the tagging and release of some now famous turtles including Bob, the green turtle, who was in rehabilitation for eight years before she was ready to be released; and Novombu, a loggerhead turtle, who spent two years in intensive care before release. Bob survived ingesting plastic pollution, while Novombu was a victim of a ghost fishing net and was rescued with severe injuries.

Turtles are among the oldest creatures on earth and have remained essentially unchanged for 110 million years. In that time, they have witnessed two major extinction level events and have managed to survive and thrive.  However, today all seven species of sea turtles are classified either as endangered or as critically endangered due to human behaviour.

Source: The Newspaper

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