Thursday, July 15, 2010

Sea turtles in danger not only from the oil spill

The older I get the more I realize how much I don’t know. So when I come upon something that’s new to me, be it history or science or just plain everyday items, I feel the thrill of discovery.

Sea turtles are just such an example. Two years ago during the week I spent with my friend Nancy on Siesta Key, Florida, we went across the street to the beach one afternoon where a local environmentalist was giving a talk on sea turtles. Until then, I had just the basic knowledge about these sea creatures.

The speaker presented a comprehensive and interesting picture of this endangered species, emphasizing the environmental dangers to their existence. She explained how they crawl ashore at night to deposit their eggs and then return to the Gulf of Mexico, and why the owners of homes that line the beach are encouraged to turn off or dim their lights after dark so the turtles will find nesting places without any distractions.

Now with the oil spill, sea turtles are in the news. For an up-close view of how the disaster has affected their existence - it’s not only direct contact with oil - click on “What’s Killing the Sea Turtles”, a six-minute video on the investigation to find out what is killing endangered sea turtles in the Gulf of Mexico.