Why Are They Endangered?
Why are Sea Turtles endangered?
These magnificent sea turtles have thrived in abundance throughout the world’s tropical and subtropical seas for tens of millions of years—until recently.
Although they can still be seen swimming and laying their eggs along Mexico’s Pacific Coast, over the last two decades they have been decreasing rapidly in numbers and are now in danger of extinction.
Although it is not entirely understood, we do know that they are increasingly at risk on their birth and nesting beaches as well as in the sea. Here are some of the threats posed to sea turtles:
- People hunt sea turtles for their meat and eggs.
- And many drown when they become tangled in the giant fishing nets and longlines used by commercial fishermen.
- Pollution and coastal development are destroying the sea turtles’ natural habitats.
- Beaches used for nesting are often lost to beachfront development or are disturbed by beach maintenance and recreation.
- Reproduction is reduced when adult females are unable to nest, try to nest in poor habitats, or when eggs and hatchlings die from human or other predator activity.
- At night, both adult female Sea Turtles and hatchlings may be disoriented by artificial light, including street and hotel lights, flash cameras, and campfires, all of which attract them away from the sea.