We used informal conservation and focus group techniques to gather information in 2 Ashaninka communities in Pichis River valley, central Peru. We found that turtles were mainly used as food, although some medicinal and supernatural uses were also reported. Locals demonstrated a comprehensive knowledge on the underlying causes of contemporary reductions in turtle abundance within their territory; their spiritual beliefs, including taboos on catching turtles, and those relating to supernatural or sacred sites caused them to avoid hunting and fishing in some wetlands.

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