Sea Turtles Endangered
Sea Turtles Endangered
Uncovering the true number of sea turtles in the world is very difficult. This is because the males and the
young remain in the water almost all the time. The females only come to shore to lay their eggs. Therefore it is
hard to really note if there is a decline or an increase in the numbers for specific species of sea turtles.
Based on what information we do have, the Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle is the one that people are most concerned
about. The last count was only thousands of them around the world. It is believed that the number of them has been
slowly increasing though in the past few years which is encouraging.
There are quite a few reasons why the sea turtle population as a whole has been in danger. Humans have always
been their worst enemy. Fishermen continue to get sea turtles in their nets and other equipment. By the time they
are found though most of them have died. Many species of sea turtles are hunted in order to eat their meat or to
get oils from their bodies. Even the shells of them have been used to produce goods.
The consumption of sea turtle eggs has long been considered a delicacy. It isn’t uncommon for a large number of
what is laid on the land by sea turtles to be taken before the younglings ever have a chance to fully develop. When
you add in the pollution that humans have contributed to the water and the fact that we continue to take the land
they once used for depositing their eggs, you can see how we have a negative impact on their survival.
There is scientific evidence to suggest many seat turtles develop what is known as Fibropapillomas. These are
various types of growths that form on their bodies. They can kill sea turtles as they can develop on the flippers
and that will make movement very difficult. They can also grow on the face and that will impede their vision. Many
sea turtles get infections in these areas that they die from.
Natural disasters are also to blame when it comes to the sea turtle population. For example the coast of Florida
was hit four times in 2004 by hurricanes. More than half of that population of them was killed during these storms.
When you consider that approximately 90% of all sea turtles in the USA are in that location it was a huge loss for
the species as a whole.
Right now sea turtles are protected under the Endangered Species Act of 1973. Even with such laws in place
though many of them continue to be destroyed annually. The U.S. National Marine Fishery has also started to use
devices that will exclude turtles from being captured with other aquatic life. It is mandatory to use and has been
in place since 1989. However, there are still many countries out there where such laws aren’t in place.
A key way that conservation efforts are in place to protect sea turtles is to isolate their areas from public
use on beaches. They also monitor these areas to be sure people aren’t coming in to take away eggs. Those in charge
of such areas also try to keep predators out. They may go as far as to help the younglings get out of the eggs and
into the water if they are struggling. These efforts are in place to help increase the survival rate of the
younglings for sea turtles. Other efforts include taking injured sea turtles to live in captivity rather than
allowing them to die in the wild.