Commercially breed reptiles to reduce pressure on wild populations

How is the evidence assessed?
  • Effectiveness
    not assessed
  • Certainty
    not assessed
  • Harms
    not assessed

Study locations

Key messages

  • One study evaluated the effects on reptile populations of commercially breeding reptiles to reduce pressure on wild populations. This study was in the Cayman Islands.








  • Human behaviour change (1 study): One study in the Cayman Islands found that where there was a commercial turtle farm, consumption and purchase of wild turtle products was rare, though some residents still showed a preference for wild turtle meat.

About key messages

Key messages provide a descriptive index to studies we have found that test this intervention.

Studies are not directly comparable or of equal value. When making decisions based on this evidence, you should consider factors such as study size, study design, reported metrics and relevance of the study to your situation, rather than simply counting the number of studies that support a particular interpretation.

Supporting evidence from individual studies

  1. A study in 2014 in the Cayman Islands (Nuno et al. 2018) found that where there was a commercial turtle farm, consumption and purchase of wild turtle products was rare, though some residents still showed a preference for wild turtle meat. Overall, around 1% of households illegally consumed eggs in the prior 12 months and 2% illegally bought turtle meat. Among consumers who preferred buying uncooked turtle meat, 14% showed a preference for wild meat over farmed meat. Of residents that consumed turtle during the prior 12 months, 37% bought it from the turtle farm and 62% did not buy uncooked turtle meat (e.g. consumed at restaurants). During the 12 months of the study, no source of legal, wild turtle meat was available to consumers. In 1968, a commercial breeding operation was established to provide turtle meat for consumption and reduce pressure on wild stocks. In 2014, surveys of 100 households from each of six districts were carried out, and respondents were asked about turtle meat consumption, purchase and participation in illegal behaviours relating to sea turtles (see paper for details of questioning methods). In addition, 182 consumers of turtle meat were asked further questions about their preferences.

    Study and other actions tested
Please cite as:

Sainsbury K.A., Morgan W.H., Watson M., Rotem G., Bouskila A., Smith R.K. & Sutherland W.J. (2021) Reptile Conservation: Global Evidence for the Effects of Interventions for reptiles. Conservation Evidence Series Synopsis. University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.

Where has this evidence come from?

List of journals searched by synopsis

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Reptile Conservation

This Action forms part of the Action Synopsis:

Reptile Conservation
Reptile Conservation

Reptile Conservation - Published 2021

Reptile synopsis

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