Planet Gore

Who or What is Killing the Gulf Turtles?

So far, it’s not the oil. AP:

GULFPORT, Miss. – Federal fisheries officials are investigating whether aggressive shrimpers or other fishermen are causing the deaths of endangered sea turtles that have been washing up on Gulf Coast beaches with no signs of oil, an official said Wednesday.

Investigators will look at whether some shrimp boats taking part in an emergency shrimping season ahead of the Gulf oil spill removed devices from their nets that are intended to allow turtles to escape, said Sheryan Epperly, sea turtle team leader for the National Marine Fisheries Service.

“The agency has been trying to collect information on not just the trawling fisheries but any other fishing that may have been going on in the area,” Epperly said. “If the turtle excluder device is not properly used, then that likely could lead to the deaths of any turtles that get caught in the nets.”

Wildlife officials say at least 35 endangered sea turtles have washed up on Gulf coast beaches, but it’s not clear what’s killing them. Necropsies have shown no signs of oil.

The rest here.

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