Easter Island has experienced a marked increase in tourism during the past few decades; this has intensified the use of natural resources, which has in turn posed new threats to marine wildlife. To gather information on marine turtle species inhabiting Easter Island and research needs for their conservation, we conducted interviews with local communities and combined them with coastal and underwater surveys. Interviews indicated the presence of five marine turtle species and highlighted an important historical connection with the Rapa Nui culture; we identified several potential threats associated with growing tourism that should be taken as a research priority and integrated with environmental education programs in order to ensure the long-term conservation of marine turtles on this remote island in the Southeast Pacific.
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