Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Kemp’s ridley Sea Turtles on Decline

The population of Kemp’s ridley sea turtles in Texas is now declining once again, according to a recent article by Mary Gaskill in Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine.

The 2013 season showed a substantial drop in the sea turtles’ numbers, according to Donna Shaver, chief of sea turtle science and recovery at Padre Island National Seashore. Although it is unclear what exactly caused the drop in numbers, Shaver suspects the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, shrimp trawling, and increased freshwater inflow might be to blame.

Gaskill is coauthor of A Worldwide Travel Guide to Sea Turtles, a guide to the places where people can view sea turtles and participate in authentic conservation projects. With California Academy of Sciences research associate Wallace J. Nichols and SEE Turtles cofounder and director Brad Nahill, Gaskill covers five continents, including the South Pacific and Caribbean, directing readers to the parks, reserves, and research sites where they can responsibly observe turtles in the wild, observe female sea turtles laying eggs, and hatchlings make their harrowing journey from nest to sea.

Options for on-site lodging and other amenities are included, if available, as well as details of other nearby attractions that travelers may wish to include in their itineraries.

A World-Wide Travel Guide to Sea Turtles will be released by Texas A&M University Press this fall.

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