IFAW highlights its efforts towards saving sea turtles during World Turtle Day

Wednesday, 23 May, 2007
Yarmouth Port, MA
Sea turtles around the world continue to face great threats from human activity. Since the year 2000, May 23rd has been established as World Turtle Day to raise awareness on this animal’s plight. IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare – www.ifaw.org ) works with several partner organizations around the world to rescue and rehabilitate sea turtles that get stranded in beaches, suffer from entanglements in fishing nets and are threatened by poaching and nest site degradation.
“World Turtle Day gives us the opportunity to reinforce and highlight our commitment towards these amazing animals,” said Anand Ramanathan of IFAW. “Sea turtles can take many years to reach an age when they can mate, this very slow maturation process makes rescuing every single one we can all the more important.”
Eroding beaches around the world pose serious threats to sea turtles that return to breed in their sands. Both adults and hatchlings suffer from loss of habitat, poaching, nest predation and disorientation by artificial light. The turtles that are able to return to sea are not yet free of danger as fishing practices still causes deaths from entanglement in fishing gear.
IFAW’s work to save sea turtles around the globe includes:
  • Sea turtle rescue and release operations, nest site protection from human poachers, and wildlife and coastal community education in Sri Lanka. 
  • Sea turtle standing response and rehabilitation program in Uruguay.
  • Sea turtle rescue and disentanglement program in Peru. 
  • Coastal community education workshops for Pacific leatherback sea turtle protection in Mexico.
  • Scientific studies on the Hawksbill sea turtle in Yucatan, Mexico.
  • Sea Turtle Population Assessment, Data Management & Awareness in Trinidad & Tobago. 
  • Field education programs for local fishermen at fish landing sites to encourage sea turtle disentanglement from fishing nets in Kenya.

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