Sunday, 15 May 2016

Sea Turtles: Animals in Danger

By Harrison Hurtado (5th semester undergraduate Economics student, level 4 English)

Currently, the amount of pollution in the world is increasing and this is producing environmental, social and economic problems, but one of the most difficult problems that is caused by this issue is the extinction of animals, for example sea turtles.

Sea turtles are the oldest still existing reptiles. Now, they are in danger of extinction. One of the most important causes of this is illegal hunting. Many of these animals are harpooned or caught with nets. This practice is carried out with the purpose of eating their meat or selling their shells to make crafts.

The pollution of the seas and beaches has destroyed the habitat of these animals, without considering the rubbish that causes respiratory and bowel problems, causing their death.

Given the feasible danger of extinction of this reptile, the governments of Puerto Rico and the USA protect them through laws. These laws forbid them from being hunted and also prohibit any other action that endangers the life of this reptile. Breaking any of these laws can have a penalty of USD$100,000 in Colombia or one year in jail.

Finally, with the purpose of stopping these animals from becoming extinct, biologists from the Department of Natural and Enviromental Resources have created projects to shelter sea turtles when they lay eggs. These hatch on beaches and are patrolled to protect adults and nests and also collect data about reproduction to help create recovery strategies. Also, it is very important that people help in this project by campaigning to clean the seas and beaches because these animals live or shelter in these places. For example, there are many problems with sea turtles in Choco beaches, like Playon el Valle and El Almejal. It’s important that we do everything we can to help these animals in Colombia.

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