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Published:February 23rd, 2009 09:51 EST
Sea Turtles are Drowning Being Crushed and Captured:  Risk of Extinction

Sea Turtles are Drowning Being Crushed and Captured: Risk of Extinction

By SOP newswire2

Unable to free themselves from razor-sharp hooks, sea turtles die slow and agonizing deaths, wounded and drowning in waters where these gentle creatures have made their home for millions of years.

Since just last week, more than 45,000 caring wildlife supporters like you have already signed our petition to save sea turtles in the Gulf of Mexico from the hooks of bottom longline fishing.

Now please help us stop fishing practices that kill imperiled sea turtles and protect baby sea turtles and the nesting grounds that they need to survive with a special donation.

Sea turtles take a long time to mature and reproduce, making each individual important to the continued survival of these ancient ocean travelers.
But sea turtle hatchlings can become confused by artificial lighting on nesting beaches and many never make it to sea. Those who do make it face drowning by the nets and razor-sharp hooks of irresponsible fishing practices -- and mothers ready to lay their eggs face the loss of vital nesting beaches due to development or rising sea levels.

Without our help, sea turtles could be doomed to extinction.
With your compassionate help, we can save the lives of sea turtles and help save them from extinction. Please make a tax-deductible contribution today to help save these beautiful sea creatures from being killed by harmful fishing practices and habitat loss.

You can make a life-saving difference. Donate $50 or more and we`ll even send you a plush sea turtle like this as a reminder of the important part you`re playing in the fight to save sea turtles for future generations to enjoy.

All sea turtles in U.S. waters are listed as threatened or endangered, and we`re working hard to save them from extinction:

Off America`s coasts  As Defenders of Wildlife`s head lawyer Bob Dreher reported last week, we`re determined to suspend bottom longline fishing in the Gulf of Mexico -- a practice that killed hundreds of imperiled sea turtles in 2006-2007. More than 45,000 Defenders supporters have joined the fight, signing our petition urging the National Marine Fisheries Service to act immediately to protect the Gulf`s dwindling sea turtle population.

In Florida  Elizabeth Fleming and the rest of our Florida staff are working with local beach residents to address beach lighting that threatens sea turtle populations and disorients nesting mothers and baby sea turtles alike, working to protect sea turtle nests from destructive off-road driving and advocating for decisive action to safeguard sea turtle nesting beaches from the damaging effects of sea level rise. 

In Mexico  Defenders sea turtle specialist Juan Carlos Cantu has spent years saving sea turtles. He`s purchased de-hookers " to free sea turtles from fishing gear and held educational workshops to train local fishermen on their use. He`s also published educational comic books and enlisted Mexican sports celebrities in the fight to save sea turtles. Juan Carlos is now working to establish a new sanctuary to safeguard sea turtles off  Baja California Sur.

Around the world  Defenders staff are working to prevent trade in imperiled sea turtles, so that our sea turtles have a shot at surviving for future generations to enjoy.

Defenders has a multi-pronged plan to save our sea turtles from extinction, but we need your support. Can you help us meet out goal to raise $45,000 by the end of February to support these and other wildlife-saving efforts?
Please donate today to help support Defenders of Wildlife`s concrete efforts on the ground and around the world to save imperiled sea turtles.

Rodger Schlickeisen
Defenders of Wildlife