Sea turtles have gently swum Earth's seas for tens of millions of years. They survived the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs. They survived the ice age. But will they survive US?
The IUCN estimates that millions of Hawksbill sea turtles have been killed in the past century, primarily for their beautiful shells that are turned into sunglasses, combs and jewelry. Although international trade of Hawksbill shells is banned, illegal hunting and sale continues. As if this gruesome threat weren't bad enough, pollution, coral bleaching, coastal development, and unsustainable fishing resulting in turtle by-catch are making it almost impossible for Hawksbills to survive. Hawksbills are now critically endangered, with fewer than 25,000 nesting females estimated in their tropical range.
But it's not too late. The survival of Hawksbills, and thousands of other endangered species, depends on healthy habitats. If the world commits to saving them right NOW by protecting and restoring their beaches, reefs, and migration routes, and if the international community says NO to illegal Hawksbill hunting and trade, these gentle giants might yet make a comeback.
Take action now: SAY NO to the illegal Hawksbill trade and SAY YES to healthy habitats that sustain our wildlife!
Photo credit: Jeff Yonover