ATTENTION!

Hawksbill Turtles are critically endangered

Species Info.

Currently the Hawksbill Turtles are critically endangered. They have been exploited for thousands of years. Their future status will hopefully become much safer due to all the organizations and such around the world for example, the Fauna and Flora (FFI) in Nicaragua, began a trial project to help protect these special species of turtles from going extinct. Something special about Hawksbill Turtles is their solid tortoiseshell which allows them to protect themelves form any predator. Also, their very large fins allow them to move and swim in order to hunt prey or get away from predators as well. Majority of these types of turtles are found mainly in clear, relatively shallow water of coastal reefs, bays, estuaries and lagoons, with nesting generally occurring on remote, isolated sandy beaches. They can be found more in tropical areas and in large seas.

Threats

One of the Hawksbill's biggest threats comes from the illegal trade of the turtle's shell; it is a prized possession and is being sold as jewellry and ornaments for centuries. While the legal international trade of hawksbill shells ceased in 1994, Cuba has recently pushed to reopen the market. A number of countries still allow the killing of hawksbill sea turtles, including the British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Haiti and the Turks and Caicos Islands. Another major threat to these turtles is the climate change. An increase in the temperature of the sand used for nesting could have serious consequences for the hawksbill turtle, as gender of the hatchlings is determined by incubation temperature. The outcome of this is likely to be a skewed sex ratio, which could threaten the stability of hawksbill turtle populations in the future.

hawksbill turtle eating jellyfish

Current conservation efforts

Since 1991, The Hawksbill Turtle Recovery Project has tagged 67 adult female hawksbills, documented and protected over 580 nests, a

Paso Pacífico’s program makes protecting sea turtle nests more rewarding than raiding them. The incentive payments are given for protecting the sea turtle nests from the time the eggs are laid, and also when hatched eggs are verified by Paso Pacifico Rangers and a community committee. Individuals receive a nominal payment upon committing to protect a nest ($10 – $20/nest). There are many organizations around the world helping to save the turtles from going extinct by making laws and treaties, just anything they can do to protect this endangered species.

Impact

Considered by many to be the most beautiful of sea turtles for their colorful shells, the hawksbill is found in tropical waters around the world. They spend their time in coral reefs, rocky areas, lagoons, oceanic islands, and shallow coastal areas. No innocent animal should be killed even though it may have a positive impact on our ecomony by their prized shells for jewellry, cowboys boots and other accessories. But, they have a extreme impact on the ocean life. Hawksbills are important inhabitants of coral reefs. By consuming sponges, they play an important role in the reef community, aiding corals in growth. It’s estimated that one turtle can consume over 1,000 pounds of sponges per year. Without them, sponges have the ability to overgrow corals and suffocate reefs. We can help by going online and there are plenty of different organizations that anyone can take part in and help any chance they get!