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Animal Planet focuses on Rafetus conservation work in Vietnam

From the 15th to 20th of March 2019, we were pleased to welcome and work with Forrest Galante, the host of Animal Planet's “Extinct or Alive”, program. The wildlife biologist, and outdoor adventurer and his film crew work at Dong Mo Lake, Hoan Kiem Lake and other lakes to investigate the story of the world rarest turtle species, Swinhoe’s Softshell Turtle (Rafetus swinhoei), in Vietnam and the work being done by the Asian Turtle Program (ATP) of Indo Myanmar Conservation (IMC) and our partners.

This one hour long special episode for “Extinct or Alive” is scheduled to be aired on the famous Animal Planet Channel this summer in the US and we hope it highlights this incredible species, we are confident it will successfully convey the story of the species and the hope we have for its conservation. The ATP/IMC strongly believes we have other locations where more animals survive and we need more people on the ground involved in the search.

An Alliance for Rafetus Conservation has now been formed with the ATP/IMC, Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA), Global Wildlife Conservation (GWC) and Centre Resources and Environmental Studies (CRES). Together we believe the species can be saved.


If you would like to support our conservation efforts for the species please visit.

Press release by: Hoang Van Ha – ATP/IMC
Date: 12th April 2019

Download this press release PDF here: English pdf


Hoan Kiem turtle

Above: Plasticized “Grandfather Turtle” on display at Ngoc Son Temple in Hanoi’s Hoan Kiem Lake, this ancient individual of the species passed away in January 2017 and is considered the most famous individual of the species due to the sacred status a 15th century legend granted it. Photo by: Hoang Van Ha – ATP/IMC.

Hoan Kiem turtle

Above: Timothy McCormack and Hoang Van Ha of the Asian Turtle Program give an introduction about the legend associated with the Swinhoe’s softshell turtle in Vietnam. Photo by: Trung Trinh.

Photo gallery


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For more information please contact:

Asian Turtle Program (ATP) - Indo-Myanmar Conservation
Office: Room#1806, C14 Bac Ha Building, To Huu road, Nam Tu Liem district, Hanoi, Vietnam
PO Box 46
Tel: +84 (0) 24 7302 8389



MBZ ATP would like to thanks the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund for supporting this website
Asian Turtle Program - Indo-Myanmar Conservation
Room#1806 CT1, C14 Bac Ha Building, To Huu Street, Nam Tu Liem District, Hanoi, Vietnam
PO Box 46
Phone:+84 (0) 24 7302 8389

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