As a career biologist, former Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Executive Vice President of Defenders of Wildlife, I’m no stranger to animals in distress.
But what is happening in the Gulf of Mexico right now is an unprecedented ecological disaster. It is threatening sea turtles, sperm whales, dolphins, brown pelicans, Atlantic bluefin tuna and scores of other species… along with entire ecosystems.
Today you can help me save one of most visible victims of the Gulf offshore oil disaster: imperiled loggerhead sea turtles.
Urge the Obama administration to improve protections for these amazing seafarers by listing them as endangered under the Endangered Species Act. Please take action now.
Today I’m in the Gulf, meeting with senior officials in charge of the oil clean-up and response. Tomorrow I’ll be on one of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s response boats, surveying the damage… and dreading the sight of sea turtles, birds and other wildlife caught in the massive oil slick that’s growing by the day in the Gulf.
I’ll be working with government officials for as long as it takes to protect the wildlife that are innocent victims of BP’s negligence – all the wildlife victims. But today I need your help to save one species in particular: loggerhead sea turtles.
Help ensure loggerheads get the life-saving protections they need. Please send your message to federal officials now.
Loggerhead sea turtles were in trouble before the Gulf oil spill disaster.
The number of female loggerheads nesting on Florida beaches – one of the most important habitats for the species – has declined by 50 percent in the past decade. Scientists and government officials have sounded the alarm about what this could mean for the future of the ancient sea mariners. The National Marine Fisheries Service is now proposing to upgrade protection for loggerheads from threatened to endangered under the Endangered Species Act.
These turtles need our help even more now.
The world’s second-largest loggerhead nesting area is on the beaches of the southeastern United States, the vast majority of which includes Florida’s central Atlantic beaches.
This area is expected to be threatened by the horrific oil slick, depending on how much of the slick gets picked up by the Loop Current — a powerful ocean current that could bring the slick around the southern reaches of the state, through the sensitive coral reef and mangrove areas of the Everglades and the Keys, and then into the Gulf Stream and up the east coast of Florida.
The spill could not have happened at a worse time: loggerheads and other sea turtles — as well as many shorebirds — are in the peak of their nesting seasons right now.
Oil is extremely toxic to loggerheads and other species. Exposure can cause skin loss, poisoning, drowning and death… which is exactly why we need every available tool to help save the lives of individual loggerheads and save this species from extinction.
Today you can do something concrete to help save wildlife impacted by the disaster in the Gulf by helping to save loggerhead sea turtles from extinction. Please take action now.
We’ll do everything we can to save the lives of wildlife impacted by this environmental catastrophe. I hope you will too.
Jamie Rappaport Clark
Executive Vice President
Defenders of Wildlife
P.S. Please be sure to follow our blog (http://www.defendersblog.org) and updates on Facebook andTwitter. I’ll be posting from the Gulf all week as we work to protect coastal wildlife from toxic oil.
P.P.S. Please forward this email to at least 3 friends and help us hit our goal of 50,000 messages by next Monday (June 14th).