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The natural world. Looking pretty for 3.5b years.

Turtle People to the Rescue, 2

Author: Hugh Bollinger/Wednesday, March 26, 2014/Categories: wildlife conservation, sustainability, environment

Turtles maintain a special place in Riled Up. Creatures that have existed on Earth since before the age of the dinosaurs are important. They are all in danger from habitat destruction and other types of exploitation. Previously, we commented on the rescue of marine turtles in an earlier piece on sea turtles and the protection of their beach nesting habitats  Turtle People to the Rescue .

In the name of full disclosure, I should say that I unintentionally may have been part of the problem. When I was a little kid growing up near the deserts of southern California, I kept a tortoise in the garden that was discovered near a family campsite. The turtle lived in a small burrow for years, ate lettuce and fruit, and ambled about my backyard.

All turtles need our help. A non-profit conservation organization, the Turtle Conservancy , in Ojai, California has been active with captive breeding of rare tortoises to build populations for eventually restoration into the wild. One of the most endangered species the Conservancy works with to recover is the Plowshare tortoise from Madagascar. Less than 400 are thought to still exist in the wild due mostly to illegal harvesting from the wild for the pet trade in Europe and Asia.

Plowshare Tortoise  (credit: Wikipedia)

You can help in a number of ways: donate to one of the Turtle Conservancy programs or any other group working with turtle protection and if you're in the Ojai area, visit their facilities to learn more of their work. You can then consider yourself a 'turtle person' as well.


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