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Sea Turtle Conservation
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It's up to us all to save sea turtles from extinction. Donate online to CI today, and help turn the tide.

For more information about donating to sea turtle conservation at CI, .

Photo: © Mike Parry/Minden Pictures

Threats to sea turtles are the direct results of human behavior. Thus, we have the power to turn the tide and save sea turtles from further population decline. Following are five immediate actions you can take to help safeguard sea turtle populations around the world.

Choose your seafood wisely: By purchasing and consuming certain types of seafood, you can either support or discourage harmful fishing practices. Make responsible seafood consumption choices by avoiding the more depleted or endangered species. Consult online resources, such as Seafood Choices Alliance or Seafood Watch, for consumer options that are less detrimental to sea turtles.

Support turtle-friendly development along coastlines: You have the choice to support real estate and tourism developments that take care not to destroy beaches, sand dunes, and mangroves, as well as those that turn off lights in the evening to avoid discouraging sea turtles from nesting. If you own coastal property, find out how to minimize your impact on local wildlife. No matter where you live, Florida Fish & Wildlife's Beach Construction and Lights Guidelines are a resource you can use.

Don't purchase or consume sea turtle products: Avoid tortoiseshell trinkets or products made from turtle leather. Sea turtle eggs, meat, oils, and fat do not possess any special medicinal properties, but may contain dangerous levels of toxins such as cadmium and mercury. Refer to the TRAFFIC Guide when you travel to know where sea turtle products might be sold.

Keep rivers, streams, and oceans clean: Even if we don't directly place it there, our rubbish often ends up in the oceans. Some of it is carried by wind or in streams and rivers, while other forms of waste are just improperly disposed of. All of it causes damage to ocean wildlife. When disposing of your trash, first recycle as much as you can, and then take care to properly dispose of the rest. To help protect your local waters, join in the annual International Coastal Cleanup on Sept. 16, or organize a cleanup in your area.

Reduce your carbon emissions: To help minimize the effects of global warming on oceans, use energy-efficient appliances; turn off all lights and all electrical appliances when you aren’t using them; reduce your use of hot water; drive less, consolidate short trips, and carpool when possible; and consider a fuel-efficient vehicle for your next car purchase. You can gauge your carbon emissions using online carbon calculators like those offered by SafeClimate and The Climate Trust.

Resources and Links
CI Wide
CABS: www.biodiversityscience.org
Priority Areas: Key Marine Regions

On The Web
The State of the World's Sea Turtles (SWoT)
IUCN/SSC Marine Turtle Specialist Group
IUCN Species Survival Commission
IUCN Red List of Threatened Species

Publications & Downloads
Report: The State of the World's Sea Turtles (SWoT) (PDF–3.2mb)
Poster: Ten Most Threatened Sea Turtles in the World (PDF–705kb)


© Frans Lanting/Minden Pictures
Key leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea) populations in Mexico, Costa Rica, and Malaysia have declined more than 90 percent in less than 20 years.

© Mike Parry/Minden Pictures
You can choose to support coastline developments that take care not to destroy beaches, sand dunes, and mangroves.

© CI, Roderic B. Mast
The same hazards that threaten sea turtles imperil all ocean wildlife.

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Photo credits for banner images: (Greater Flamingos © Tui De Roy/Minden Pictures); (Diagonal-banded Sweetlips © Fred Bavendam/Minden Pictures);
(Madagascar Aloe © Frans Lanting/Minden Pictures); (Hippo © Frans Lanting/Minden Pictures); (Hummingbird © Pete Oxford); (Malagasy Frog © Piotr Naskrecki/CI)