Petition to Save the Turtles
Petition to Save the Turtles
Sea turtles have existed for over 100 million years and they traveled throughout the world's oceans, however, they are struggling to survive.
Sea turtles have been virtually eliminated from many areas of the globe. Slaughtered for virtually every part of their body, including their eggs, shells, meat, and skin, sea turtles of all species fall victim to poaching and exploitation daily. Fishermen and climate change are also two culprits in the decimation of the sea turtle population. As sea turtle population declines, so does their ability to fulfill vital functions in ocean ecosystems. If sea turtles become extinct, they could severely impact the ecosystems of marine life in ways that we may not be aware of. Sea turtles and sea turtle eggs provide important nutrients to dune and beach ecosystems as well as marine and ocean ecosystems. These ecosystems house many animals and promote the safety of the wildlife and without sea turtles, the ecosystems would be in great danger.
About 77 percent of mammal and turtle populations were increased, while 6 percent was declined. Sixteen percent had no discernable trend, which may indicate long-term population stability. The median population increase, after protection under the Endangered Species Act, was 115 percent for marine mammals and 980 percent for sea turtles. These will be the results if we continue to save the turtles. The population numbers will increase time by time if we protect them. Not just turtles but also other species.
Our environmental philosophy for this is, as a human we have the role to play in environmental changes. We are responsible for what environmental changes are happening. We should value our environment by protecting and saving it. Turtles are part of our environment. They have a role in environment and as human beings, we are responsible to protect and save the environment itself and the species that are part of it.
Major ecological effects of sea turtle extinction
1. Sea turtles, especially green sea turtles, are one of the very few animals to eat seagrass. Like normal lawn grass, seagrass needs to be constantly cut short to be healthy and help it grow across the seafloor rather than just getting longer grass blades. Sea turtles and manatees act as grazing animals that cut the grass short and help maintain the health of the seagrass beds. Over the past decades, there has been a decline in seagrass beds. This decline may be linked to the lower numbers of sea turtles.
Seagrass beds are important because they provide breeding and developmental grounds for many species of fish, shellfish, and crustaceans.
2. Beaches and dune systems do not get very many nutrients during the year, so very little vegetation grows on the dunes and no vegetation grows on the beach itself. This is because sand does not hold nutrients very well. Sea turtles use beaches and the lower dunes to nest and lay their eggs. Sea turtles lay around 100 eggs in a nest and lay between 3 and 7 nests during the summer nesting season. Along a 20 mile stretch of beach on the east coast of Florida sea turtles lay over 150,000 lbs of eggs in the sand. Not every nest will hatch, not every egg in a nest will hatch, and not all of the hatchlings in a nest will make it out of the nest. All the unhatched nests, eggs, and trapped hatchlings are very good sources of nutrients for the dune vegetation, even the leftover eggshells from hatched eggs provide some nutrients.
Dune vegetation is able to grow and become stronger with the presence of nutrients from turtle eggs. If sea turtles went extinct, dune vegetation would lose a major source of nutrients and would not be as healthy and would not be strong enough to maintain the dunes, resulting in increased erosion. Once again, all parts of an ecosystem are important, if you lose one, the rest will eventually follow.
Sea turtles are part of two ecosystems, the beach/dune system, and the marine system. If sea turtles went extinct, both the marine and beach/dune ecosystems would be negatively affected. And since humans utilize the marine ecosystem as a natural resource for food and since humans utilize the beach/dune system for a wide variety of activities, a negative impact on these ecosystems would negatively affect humans.
HOW CAN WE HELP TO SAVE THE TURTLES?
- If you buy drinks from stores or coffee shops might as well use BAMBOO or METAL straws.
- Participate in coastal clean-ups.
- Reduce marine debris that may be accidentally eaten by sea turtles.
- Keep nesting beaches dark and safe for sea turtles.
- Carry reusable water bottles and shopping bags.
IMPORTANCE TO HUMANS
Sea turtles play an important cultural role in many coastal communities around the world. Many indigenous cultures revere them or consider their ancestors. They are also an important source of income for coastal residents through turtle-watching ecotourism. Research has shown that sea turtle ecotourism can generate three times the income than by selling sea turtle parts (eggs, meat, & shells), making them worth more alive than dead.
Aside from their important ecological role, sea turtles are some of the most charismatic animals on the planet! It seems that everyone loves sea turtles. They are a source of awe and inspiration; watching them haul themselves up a beach to nest, swim through a reef, or watching hatchlings charge to the sea are truly magical and unforgettable experiences. Without sea turtles, our blue planet wouldn’t be complete.
Healthy oceans need sea turtles. Sea turtles are a "keystone species", which means they are an important part of their environment and influence other species around them. If a keystone species is removed from a habitat, the natural order can be disrupted, which impacts other wildlife and fauna in different ways. There are many things we can do as individuals like to turn out lights visible from the beach. Artificial lights confuse hatchlings trying to make their way to the moonlight reflecting on the ocean and discourage females from nesting. Don’t litter, reduce the amount of garbage you produce and help clean up beaches and other natural areas, as beach debris can cause female turtles to false-crawl and prevent them from successfully nesting. Follow posted signs to stay away from nesting areas. Reduce or eliminate pesticide and herbicide use. Watch out for sea turtles while boating and more. Turtles are not just animals for decoration or pets, they're more than that, as humans we need them, mother nature needs them, the earth needs the. Let us unite and help save them, start by signing our petition. We're just living on earth, we don't own it so we don't have any right to destroy it and all things in it.
Sea Turtle. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.worldwildlife.org/species/sea-turtle
Conservation Organizations. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.tooraretowear.org/conservation-organizations?fbclid=IwAR0-IX4ZSKt0q9yi9mWTRDhjiBdRj7gEli1CDcjvrilGbRz-rsy6SnPoMtc
Study: 77 Percent of Marine Mammals, Sea Turtles Recovering Under Endangered Species Act. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2019/marine-mammals-and-sea-turtles-01-16-2019.php?fbclid=IwAR1AjgsNFefZnsM4IH_g3Mmlyf6-xarKTTwEinIEE4DJarE0-ll6a8FbSS8
Why Are Sea Turtles Important. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.seeturtles.org/why-are-sea-turtles-important?fbclid=IwAR2FeQpIX5ZwbqNjdYy0HjWw8U0DsvvuWb7YTNwoJdV0jsKWhvuWxESz_Bo