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Turtle and Tortoise Newsletter, 2000, 3:14a
© 2000 by Chelonian Research Foundation

Turtle and Tortoise Newsletter

Observations in the Qing Ping Free Market, Guangzhou, China, November 2000

Harald Artner1 and Andreas Hofer2
1Maria Ponsee 32, A-3454 Sitzenberg-Reidling, Austria;
E-mail: 113142.3232@compuserve.com
2Katzbach 104, A-4631 Krenglbach, Austria

Qing Ping Free Market is the largest market in China selling live turtles. We visited the market four to five times a day (early and late morning, early and late afternoon and the evening) between November 6 and 9, 2000. The main exporting countries (according to the tags on the shipping containers and from numerous interviews with traders) were Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia (mainly Sumatra), and Vietnam. Here is a short survey of what could be found in just a 4-day period:

1. Hundreds of adult Morenia ocellata (CITES I) females and a couple of juveniles (maybe some males).

2. Appr. 25 Geochelone platynota (CITES II) behind the scenes.

3. Chitra chitra from Myanmar!

4. Few Callagur borneoensis (CITES II, appr. 15), no Batagur baska (contrary to May 2000 !)

5. More Cuora amboinensis than ever (thousands). Listing in App. II totally in vain (as we always feared).

6. Cuora trifasciata (adult, CITES II) sold for Y 9000 (per head, not per pound; under the table, of course).

7. Relatively few (app. 20) Cuora galbinifrons (CITES II) and Cuora flavomarginata (CITES II), maybe due to season?

8. Hundreds of Heosemys grandis, Heosemys spinosa (from Sumatra), Cyclemys dentata, Orlitia borneensis, Indotestudo elongata, Pyxidea mouhotii (both subspecies), Siebenrockiella crassicollis (from Sumatra), Ocadia sinensis (Taiwan form, all sizes), Amyda cartilaginea, and Trachemys scripta elegans.

9. Also present: Cyclemys pulchristriata, Cyclemys tcheponensis, Melanochelys trijuga edeniana, Platysternon megacephalum, Chinemys reevesii, Mauremys mutica, Mauremys annamensis, Chinemys nigricans (1), Palea steindachneri (1), Dogania subplana (2), Nilssonia formosa (quite a few), Lissemys scutata, Geoemyda spengleri, Macroclemys temmincki, and Sacalia quadriocellata.

10. Hundreds of Hieremys annandalei (shipped in by Malaysia and Singapore Airlines), Malayemys subtrijuga and Notochelys platynota(Sumatra).

11. Millions of Pelodiscus from Thailand & Hainan Dao.

12. No Indian, African or South American species!

13. This time (contrary to prior visits in 1999 and 2000) no Manouria impressa(CITES II) were seen.