PREFACE The first manuscript for this book originated in 1970 in the form of a revised translation of 'Zeeschildpadden in Suriname,, a mimeographed report written primarily for internal use. This English version was of the same hybrid nature as the Dutch booklet, which was meant to be a comprehensive general guide for visitors to the nesting beaches, as well as a publication of the results of local research. The present English version, which has grown to three times the size of the original, maintains this hybrid nature. Consequently this book contains sections on general taxonomy and on the biology of sea turtles, subjects which have been treated elsewhere in a superior way by more competent authors. This general information, which is included to make the book readable for the general naturalist interested in our sea turtles, alternates with comprehensive local data — for the attention of turtle specialists abroad — which are far too detailed to captivate the attention of the general reader. In spite of this disadvantage I decided to have the manuscript published in this form, one reason being the fear that otherwise it would never be published. The other reason which prevented the presentation of it in a more pure form lies in the ontogeny of the manuscript. The correction of the translation was not finished before the end of the 1971 turtle season, when so much information became available that the text had to undergo a thorough revision. This was not completed before the main force of the next season's turtles was making its landfall on our coast, again adding substantially to our knowledge. Shifting of the beaches caused the maps and descriptions of the beaches to become obsolete. This repetitious story, which reflects itself