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Marine Turtles Protection: It's The Law
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Page 1 of 1Total of 9 messages
Posted by:Jun 18th 2009, 03:53:03 am
Fig Tree News TeamDear Editor:

-----

Re: Call to Action to Ban the Slaughter of Sea Turtles in The Bahamas

On October 1, 2008 the Bahamas Government issued a press release promising a total ban on the harvesting of sea turtles in The Bahamas by April 1, 2009. This legislation has not been passed as promised.

We are extremely concerned, from both a touristic and an environmental standpoint, about the killing of these beautiful sea creatures in The Bahamas.

The Bahamas Government is aware that the World Conservation Union (IUCN) considers ALL marine turtles globally to be either threatened or endangered. Further, The Bahamas is a signatory to the Convention on the International Trade of Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), an international Convention that seeks to protect sea turtles and other endangered species around the world.

We are now especially concerned that The Bahamas Government's delay in passing the legislation, which they promised would be in effect by April 1, 2009, is undermining the efforts of other nations like the US, Cuba, Costa Rica, Mexico and other Caribbean countries that have already enacted legislation to protect these endangered animals.

Following are the top ten reasons why The Bahamas should stop the killing of sea turtles in The Bahamas as published by BREEF (www.breef.org) on their web site:

1. The World Conservation Union (IUCN) considers all marine turtles to be threatened or endangered globally.

2. Sea turtles, especially green turtles feed on seagrass helping to maintain healthy, functioning seagrass beds; an important habitat for conch.

3. Sea Turtles are one of the Earth's last ancient reptiles; it is therefore important to maintain this important aspect of biological history.

4. Sea turtles are protected by CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora). Many other countries have already banned the harvesting of turtles.

5. The presence of marine turtles in our waters will attract tourists to The Bahamas, supporting ecotourism ventures and the dive industry.

6. Marine Turtles are a transboundary species - they migrate long distances as they carry out their life cycle. As such, the harvest or the protection of turtles in The Bahamas will impact populations not only in The Bahamas but in other regions as well.

7. Marine Turtles mature very slowly. Many species do not become reproductive for 30 – 40 years. This makes it difficult for populations to recover from fishing pressure and other threats.

8. Because they grow slowly and have many predators when they are small, very few hatchlings survive to reach adulthood; this makes adult and large juvenile turtles especially valuable to the population.

9. Marine Turtles lay their eggs on beaches, many of which are impacted by coastal development. Coastal development may limit the ability of turtles to find suitable nesting sites, thus, affecting their ability to reproduce successfully.

10. Marine turtles are impacted by marine debris, each year many turtles die after ingesting discarded plastic bags that they mistake for food.

For these and many other reasons, we again urge the public to write the Government, if they have not already done so, asking them to live up to their promises and ban the slaughter of sea turtles in The Bahamas.

Please send your letters by e-mail, fax or mail to:

By e-mail: bahamasturtles@gmail.com

By fax: 362-5091

By Mail: Bahamas Sea Turtle Conservation Group, P.O. Box N-1496, Nassau, Bahamas

For more information visit our website at http://www.saveourseaturtles.org and see photos of these beautiful animals in the wild. You can also view the horrific pictures of the turtle slaughter that is taking place in The Bahamas.

We urge all Bahamians to take action to ensure that the Bahamas Government lives up to its' promises to enact legislation that will enforce a total ban on the slaughter of sea turtles in The Bahamas.

Sincerely,

Kim Aranha, Debbie Krukowski, Jane Mather

Co-Chairpersons

Bahamas Sea Turtle Conservation Group
Posted by:Dec 15th 2008, 10:51:24 am
Fig Tree News TeamThe Island School Graduates Four Environmental Leaders
By Andrea Krol, Cape Eleuthera Institute


Cape Eleuthera, Bahamas - On Wednesday December 10th, The Island School graduated 48 students from the fall 2008 semester. Among them were four Bahamas Environmental Steward Scholars (BESS) who are participating in a year-long program that includes an Island School semester and a semester internship at a conservation-related organization. BESS graduates include Bradley Watson of Nassau, Alannah Vellacott of Freeport, Jasmine Whitcombe of Freeport, and Theodore (Ted) Thompson of Governor’s Harbour.
“This experience has taught me the importance of what I can give back to my community. Being here I have learned how to see how valuable The Bahamas is and that we must protect its resources for the future,” explains Ted Thompson, “My semester here has motivated me bring people together to create change.”

Beginning in January, the students will take on internships at the Cape Eleuthera Institute and the Bahamas Reef Environment Educational Foundation (BREEF). The internships give them the opportunity to get hands-on experience with world-class research projects on aquaculture, bonefish and flats ecology, and shark conservation, as well as national policy and education initiatives related to the environment.

The BESS program is coordinated in partnership with BREEF and has received support from the Lyford Cay Foundation and business leaders of Nassau and The Bahamas.


Bradley Watson of Nassau in a Celestial Navigation class

The Island School is a three-month semester leadership program for high school students. Participants have come from over 300 schools to study the tropical marine environment and take place-based courses in math, history, English, and art. The Cape Eleuthera Institute is a marine research facility that works with universities to model sustainable systems and find solutions for resource management. For more information visit www.ceibahamas.org and www.islandschool.org . Both programs are supported by the Cape Eleuthera Foundation.
Posted by:Dec 11th 2008, 04:15:42 pm
JohnThere is an excellent article in the Winter issue of the Nature Conservancy on the return to the Turtles and the protection they are receiving on other Caribbean beaches.
Posted by:Nov 9th 2008, 08:08:16 pm
ash12the police or the administrator
Posted by:Nov 9th 2008, 01:30:44 pm
KimberlyI meant on Harbour Island ;-) ...
Posted by:Nov 9th 2008, 11:17:42 am
ash12the department of fisheries i presume
Posted by:Nov 6th 2008, 10:12:17 pm
KimberlyTo whom do you report such infractions? I've been seeing fishermen and locals slaughtering turtles since I was a little girl, and no one seemed to mind ... we called the little dock at the end of Dunmore Street the 'turtle dock' because so many hawksbills were turned into lamps and bracelets there ;-(.
Posted by:Nov 6th 2008, 07:51:53 pm
ash12longtime!!!it should,ve been enforced alongtime ago,,,it hurts my eyes to see some local fishermen slaughtering turtles,,government should,ve had some sort of marine patrol to visit the docks and patrol the harbour and catch these guys breaking the law!
Posted by:Nov 6th 2008, 02:39:51 pm
Fig Tree News TeamEnhanced Protection for Marine Turtles

On Monday October 1, 2008 the Bahamas Government issued a Press Release which proposes new regulations to enhance the protection of marine turtles in The Bahamas.

BREEF is in support the proposed enhanced protection and joins The Bahamas Sea Turtle Conservation Group, The Nature Conservancy, The Bahamas Humane Society, Friends of the Environment, and the Bahamas National Trust in the call for a total ban on the harvesting of sea turtles in The Bahamas.
10 Reasons to support the enhanced protections for marine turtles in The Bahamas

1. The World Conservation Union (IUCN) considers all marine turtles to be threatened or endangered globally.

2. Sea turtles, especially green turtles feed on seagrass helping to maintain healthy, functioning seagrass beds; an important habitat for conch.

3. Sea turtles are one of the Earth's last ancient reptiles; it is therefore important to maintain this important aspect of biological history.

4. Sea turtles are protected by CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora): Many other countries have already banned the harvesting of turtles.

5. The presence of marine turtles in our waters will attract tourists to the Bahamas, supporting eco-tourism ventures and the dive industry.

6. Marine turtles are a transboundary species - they migrate long distances as they carry out their life cycle. As such, the harvest or the protection of turtles in The Bahamas will impact populations not only in the Bahamas but in other regions as well.

7. Marine turtles mature very slowly. Many species do not become reproductive for decades. This makes it difficult for populations to recover from fishing pressure and other threats.

8. Because marine turtles grow slowly and have many predators when they are small, very few hatchlings survive to reach adulthood; this makes adult and large juvenile turtles especially valuable to the population.

9. Marine turtles lay their eggs on beaches, many of which are impacted by coastal development. This limits the ability of turtles to find suitable nesting sites, thus, affecting their ability to reproduce successfully.

10. Marine turtles are impacted by marine debris, each year many turtles die after ingesting plastic bags discarded in our oceans which they mistake for food. Reduce the impact of plastic bags on marine life by using resuable grocery bags.

Green Bags are available at the BREEF (242)-327-9000 and other local vendors for a donation of $2. Buy yours today!!!!

Send in your comments about the proposed measures to enhance marine turtle protection
The Department of Marine Resources invites comments from the general public: Comments should be addressed to: The Director, Department of Marine Resources, Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources, P.O. Box N-3028, Nassau, NP, Bahamas. or email fisheries@bahamas.gov.bs or by fax to (242)-393-0238.

You can also send comments to breef@breef.org.

You can read more about turtles here: http://www.breef.org/Portals/0/Enhanced%20Protection%20for%20Marine%20Turtles%20Oct%2008.pdf

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