Cayman Islands - From consumption to conservation: Turtles still crucial to Cayman’s economy

Sea turtles continue to play a key role in the Cayman Islands economy. But the iconic sea creatures have become more valuable alive than dead.

While past generations of Caymanians relied on turtling for food and as a source of income, modern-day islanders are seeking to preserve and restore turtle populations.

“The value of our reef systems and the animals that live there has gone up by 10 times in terms of sustainable use through viewing opportunities,” said artist and conservationist Guy Harvey.

“That’s true for many animals. You can put a dollar value on individual rays, sharks and even turtles and it is many times higher for snorkelling, diving and photographing than it is for consumption.”

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