Thursday, February 19, 2009

Help Save Sea Turtles!

Mom received this e-mail yesterday from Defenders of Wildlife and the subject line read "Will we have to go to court to save sea turtles?" Yikes! My little ocean buddies are in trouble again so I need your help. Please take action today by signing the petition here.

Dear Michele,
It’s a cruel way to die… and it’s happening to some of the planet’s most ancient and endangered creatures. Snagged by razor sharp hooks on fishing lines that span anywhere from four to nine nautical miles, endangered sea turtles are drowning and dying right now off America’s shores.

My name is Bob Dreher, and I run the legal department here at Defenders of Wildlife. To help save these turtles from extinction, I’m overseeing a legal challenge right now to suspend the use of bottom longline fishing gear in vital sea turtle habitat in the Gulf of Mexico.
With your help today, I may be able to avoid a costly and lengthy legal battle that could rage on as more sea turtles die, and to secure immediate protection for imperiled sea turtles off our coasts.
Speak out for endangered sea turtles today. Sign our petition to the National Marine Fisheries Service urging the agency to suspend bottom longline fishing in the Gulf of Mexico so the beautiful sea voyagers have a shot at survival.

Between July 2006 and the end of 2007, the government estimates that the Gulf of Mexico bottom longline fishery, which targets reef fish like grouper and tilefish, resulted in the capture of nearly 1,000 threatened and endangered sea turtles -- and that in more than 80% of these incidents, the turtles were injured or killed. Six of seven species of sea turtles are listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act, and indiscriminate fishing practices are a grave threat to sea turtles around the world. Loggerheads nesting on Florida beaches -- the same turtles captured in the Gulf of Mexico bottom longline fishery -- have plummeted by more than 40% over the last decade.

Take action now to save our sea turtles. Sign the petition to the National Marine Fisheries Service today.

Earlier this month, my legal team and I met with officials at the National Marine Fisheries Service to encourage them to save loggerheads and other imperiled sea turtles with an emergency suspension of the Gulf of Mexico bottom longline fishery. They were receptive, but now federal officials need to hear from you.

Please sign our petition to save the lives of sea turtles today, and we will hand deliver your comments to the agency before the end of the month. With your help, we hope to collect at least 40,000 comments in favor of protecting sea turtles from bottom longline fishing by March 1st.
Sea turtles have been swimming in our planet’s waters for millions of years. With your help, we can help ensure that they are around for future generations to enjoy.

With Gratitude,
Bob DreherVice President for Conservation LawDefenders of Wildlife

P.S. Federal officials need to act now to protect sea turtles. Please sign our petition to save sea turtles today, so we can deliver your comments to the National Marine Fisheries Service before March 1st.

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