Trouble is brewing for turtle populations worldwide. A new report from The Turtle Conservation Coalition reveals that over 25 of the world’s known 328 species are currently endangered. The TCC endangered list was expanded to over 25 species for the first time this year, signifying a real crisis for our slow-moving friends. Turtles are the fastest disappearing species group on our planet. According to Online PR News, 57 species as well as some of the most threatened reside in Canada and the U.S., including the Atlantic Ridley Sea Turtle (Connecticut) and the Gopher Tortoise (Florida).
The biggest threats to turtles are habitat loss, overexploitation of wild turtles for human use, invasive species/diseases and climate change. Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (PARC) are working hard to raise awareness on this difficult issue, and have launched a campaign proclaiming 2011 the ‘Year of the Turtle,’ according to Connecticutplus.com. Connecticut is home to seven endangered turtle species. The state will help PARC spread the word on the turtle plight from local to federal officials.
The key to turtle recovery is for us to take action on behalf of these helpless animals! We must ban together, protect habitats, and manage turtle species and crisis situations such as natural disasters (oil spills, etc). We must become tough as turtle shells and serve as a protective barrier.