STRP filed a lawsuit to stop the burning of sea turtles in BP oil clean-up burn boxes. STRP also filed several notices of intent to sue the U. S. government over burning of sea turtles and delaying the opening of the Texas shrimp season to protect endangered Kemp's ridley sea turtles. See summary of action and links:
7.14.2010 With BPís massive oil spill in the Gulf pushing rare sea turtles closer
than ever to extinction, STRP petitioned the
federal government for an emergency extension of the shrimp fishery
seasonal closure. The closure expired Thursday, July 15. We also asked the National Marine Fisheries Service to conduct
an analysis required by the Endangered Species Act before allowing the
fishery to open as usual to determine whether sea turtles would be
jeopardized. Download the 60-day Notice Letter.
7.07.2010 Sea Turtle Restoration Project filed an emergency request to halt the
release of hatchling sea turtles from Padre Island National Seashore in
Texas into the Gulf of Mexico with the US Fish and Wildlife Service,
National Park Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration. Instead, hatchlings should be moved to sea turtle
research and rehabilitation facilities and raised until it is safe to
let them go. If the hatchlings enter the oil slick, the tiny turtles
are likely to perish as contact with oil will hinder their ability to
swim, breathe and eat.
7.02.2010 BP and the U.S. Coast Guard have committed to protecting sea turtles
from incineration in oil burning operations in the Gulf to settle our
lawsuit. BP and the Coast Guard agreed to
clearing burn boxes of sea turtles and placing wildlife observers on
board every vessel. Final details are still under negotiation.
6.30.2010 Turtle Island Restoration Network (TIRN) joined shrimp boat
captains and conservation partners in a lawsuit filed in New Orleans to
halt BP oil
burning operations immediately until the safety of sea turtles can be
assured. The lawsuit seeks a temporary restraining order against BP for
its lease under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act.
lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Louisiana in New Orleans by Meyer Gliztenstein &
Crystal of Washington DC on behalf of Turtle Island Restoration
Network, Center for Biological Diversity, Animal Welfare Institute, and
Animal Legal Defense Fund.
6.29.2010 Turtle Island Restoration
Network today officially notified BP and the U.S. Coast Guard of their
intent to sue to stop the burning alive of endangered sea turtles in
the chaotic clean-up efforts in the Gulf of Mexico. The 60-day notice
letter is a first step to filing a lawsuit under the Endangered Species
Act. Download PDF of letter.
6.23.2010 STRP helped the turtle burning story go viral after a shrimp boat captain in Louisiana hired by BP was blocked from
rescuing juvenile Kemp's ridleys that were covered in oil in the Gulf
waters. He was captured on video saying that the turtles are being
collected in the clean-up efforts and burned up like so much ocean
debris with other marine life gathering along tide lines where oil also
congregates. See the Video on this page.
6.15.2010 STRP warns that Kemp's ridley sea turtles are swimming directly toward the BP oil spill. Highly endangered Kempís ridley sea turtles began nesting in the Gulf
just as the BP oil disaster began. A few Kempís ridleys
also nest each year on the beaches of Alabama and Florida. They forage
throughout the Gulf on crab and other shellfish. Two females equipped
with satellite tracking devices after nesting this year on Padre Island
National Seashore are traveling directly toward the oily water. Their
pathway is mapped at Padre Island National Seashore Kemp's Ridley Tracking - 2010. See seaturtle.org.
5.26.2010 With shrimping taking a toll on Gulf sea turtles, STRP calls for more TED (Turtle Excluder Device) enforcement and stirs controversy by saying that accidental capture in trawl nets is just as bad for turtles as the oil spill. Almost 200 sea turtles were found on Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana
beaches before shrimping was stopped due to the oil spill. According to
an early report in the Mississippi Press, "Necropsies completed on five
of 25 dead sea turtles found along Mississippi beaches showed no
evidence of oil killing them." (From The Times-Picayune May 3, 2010.)
Improper use or lack of TEDs may not have been detected because law
enforcement was involved in oil spill issues and not able to board