Rare turtle's habitat discovered in Vietnam's Central Highlands

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A group of scientists have discovered that Lam Dong Province in the Central Highlands is the habitat of an endangered turtle species, Saigon Tiep Thi reported Monday.


Dr. Bryan Stuart from the US-based North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, and scientists from Ho Chi Minh City University of Sciences, found eight southern Vietnamese box turtles (Cuora picturata) in the forests of Langbian plateau during a study conducted from July 2010 to January this year.


Scientists have never spotted the turtle in the wild before.


A representative of the group said the discovery was significant to preserve the endangered animal. The species was first recorded in 1998 during an investigation into wildlife trades in Ho Chi Minh City.


According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, the Cuora picturata is a "critically endangered" animal.


In other news, Quang Ngai Museum in the central province of the same name Saturday said archeologists have found a group of graves dating back more than 2,000 years.


The graves, belonging to one of the most prominent ancient Vietnamese cultures Sa Huynh (1,000 BC-200 AD), were unearthed about five kilometers from an excavation site in Tay Tra District's Tang valley.


They were located about one meter underground and between two-five meters from the Tang River's banks.


According to the museum, scientists started excavating the Tang valley two months ago and so far have discovered many relics like pottery, jewelry, tools, and nearly 20 graves. The graves included jar and pot ones a burial tradition in the Southeast Asia.


The relics are between 2,000-4,000 years old.

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