Established in 1995 by a group of biologists and naturalists and Romans recognized by the Sicilian Region, the CRTM of Linosa is one of the first rescue centers realized in Italy. In the early years the structure is supported by various forms of self-financing and in 2000, through the LIFE project "Urgent measures for the conservation of Caretta caretta in the Pelagie Islands" funded by the European Commission, improved its equipment and increased intervention capacities. In 2004 a LIFE project, called Del.Ta, sponsored by the Nature Conservation Sector of the CTS, which currently manages the center of Linosa, allowed among other things to start experimenting with low-impact fishing gear, designed to reduce the number of accidental catches of sea turtles.
The CRTM of Linosa was also part of the project Tartanet, a network made up of 12 other centers throughout the Italy, who work collaboratively through the exchange of experiences and mutual assistance. The building is less than 200 meters from the beach Pozzolana di Ponente, where sea turtles lay their eggs and where. For 18 years, the staff of the Center protects the nests and provides assistance to the hatched. The center has an area equipped for veterinary diagnostics (hematology, parasitology, radiology etc.) and for surgery, a hospital room with 10 seats and a rehabilitation pool of about 15,000 L fed by sea water properly filtered and sterilized, where the animals recovered are placed before being returned to their natural environment The public can approach the major issues related to sea turtles by visiting the exhibition hall where dioramas, panels and films tell the world of sea turtles.
Main activities of the Center:
- Recovery, treatment and rehabilitation turtles caught accidentally in fishing gear, beached or recovered at sea in distress
- Biological sampling and morphometric measurements of live and dead animals
- Monitoring beach Pozzolana di Ponente and nesting females, protecting nests and hatchlings
- Marking and sampling of tissue nesting females, recover biological materials remaining in the nests
- Training, information and awareness for fishermen and tourists (4000 visitors in 2012)
In 2009-2012 the center has conducted almost a hundred of interventions on turtle injured.