Since 1983, the primary
objective of ARCHELON, the Sea Turtle Protection Society of Greece has
been to protect the sea turtles and their habitats in Greece through
monitoring and research, developing and implementing management plans,
habitat restoration, raising public awareness and rehabilitating sick
and injured turtles.
ARCHELON is a Partner to
the UNEP/Mediterranean Action Plan, a member of the European
Environmental Bureau (EEB) and the European Union for the Conservation
of the Coasts (EUCC). Members of ARCHELON participate in the IUCN/Marine
Turtle Specialist Group and contribute to the formulation of the
international strategy for the conservation of sea turtles.
ARCHELON works closely
with state agencies, the local authorities, institutions, other NGOs,
fishermen and local inhabitants in order to mitigate and reverse
population reduction of sea turtles. Certain projects are co-funded by
the European Commission. Priority is given to the elaboration and
implementation of integrated management plans in the major loggerhead
nesting areas in Greece (Zakynthos, Bays of Kyparissia and Lakonikos,
and Crete). On Zakynthos ARCHELON conducts its projects under an
agreement with the National Marine Park. Pilot sand dune restoration
projects have been carried out behind nesting beaches.
Map of National Marine Park of Zakynthos.
ARCHELON relies heavily on voluntary work. Every year over 500
volunteers from all over the world are invited to help with the work
on the nesting beaches and the Rescue Centre.
summer the major nesting areas in Greece (Zakynthos, Peloponnesus
and Crete), around 75 kilometres are daily monitored.
year over 2,500 nests are protected against human threats, predation
and sea inundation.
year around 300 turtles are tagged in order to monitor their
movements in the sea. Recently satellite transmitters have been
50 injured sea turtles are treated every year at the Rescue Centre
at Glyfada (Athens).
permanent and 10 seasonal stations are operated by ARCHELON on
Zakynthos, Peloponnesus and Crete. There are also working two First
Aid Stations in Rethymno and in Amvrakiko Bay.
200,000 tourists are directly contacted through ARCHELON's diverse
programmes every year
15,000 students participate every year in the educational programmes.
ARCHELON participates in four Management Agencies of protected areas
(National Marine Park of Zakynthos, Amvrakikos Bay, Mesolonghi
Lagoon and Strofylia-Kotychi Lagoons) where sea turtle habitats are
Volunteers Training Centre has been established for the environment,
where seminars and presentations are taking place.
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