Naam M Maslim MSc

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OrganisatieeenheidMariene Dierecologie
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I am interested in the Conservation, Ecology, and Genetics of Indonesian Turtles. Since 2010, I have been actively studying Indonesian freshwater and marine turtles and have been involved in the assessment status of the species at both the global and national levels. I worked for Jaring KuALA as an associate research scientist from 2010-2014 to support the conservation of sea turtles, the coastal community program, and the environmental education program for coastal children in Aceh. I also helped WWF Aceh Marine Program during 2012-2014 in a collaboration program with KuALA related to the sea turtle program in Aceh. I did my Master in Animal Bioscience Program at IPB University, focusing on the Molecular Ecology of herpetofauna species, particularly turtles. During 2016-2020 I joined WCS and have supported setting up two new programs in East Nusa Tenggara and East Kalimantan. I was responsible for coordinating the priority threatened species program on Rote Island to support the reintroduction of the Rote Island Snake-necked turtle.

Currently, I am doing my PhD in Marine Animal Ecology (MAE) and Aquaculture Fisheries (AFI) Group to study the Management, habitat use, and population structure of leatherback turtles in Indonesia. Using ecological niche modelling, stable isotope analyses, and state-of-the-art techniques in genomics, we will investigate the distribution, population demographics, migration patterns, and habitat use of leatherback turtles in Indonesia to provide a solid ecological foundation upon which to base a sound management strategy for leatherback sea turtles in Indonesia. As a visiting researcher, I am also doing part of the project with the Naturalis Biodiversity Center.

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Indonesia is home to the endangered leatherback sea turtle. The known threats are egg poaching, pollution, incidental catches, illegal trade, and habitat degradation. The Indonesian government flags sea turtles as a high conservation priority, yet conservation programs are implemented limitedly. Developing an effective and well-founded conservation program is hampered by the incomplete and disparate knowledge of basic sea turtle ecology, such as distribution, population demographics, migration patterns, and habitat use in Indonesia.

The overarching aim of this project is to provide a solid ecological foundation upon which to base a sound management strategy for leatherback sea turtles in Indonesia.

In order to meet the aim, the specific objectives are to;

  • Review the current regulations and management strategies for the conservation of leatherback turtles in Indonesia
  • Identify current habitats in Indonesia and estimate potential sites based on ecological niche modelling.
  • identify and map current and future (anthropogenic) threats to leatherback turtle habitats and migration routes
  • Estimate trends of key nesting populations in Sumatra and West Papua
  • Estimate the number of local breeding populations and the connectivity among populations within Indonesia
  • Based on the acquired data, identify Regional Management Units for leatherback turtles in Indonesia

We will apply state-of-the-art approaches in ecology, such as ecological niche modelling, satellite tracking, and stable isotope analyzes together with genomics in an unprecedented extensive research effort on leatherbacks in Indonesia. The coordinated integration of ecological and genetic data will enable us to provide a rigorous understanding of the status of the leatherback turtle populations in Indonesia.

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