I don’t know anyone who doesn’t enjoy going to the beach. It seems like such a tranquil, calm place to visit. Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter how beautiful the beach is, there are going to be some people who don’t mind trashing it.
This has caused many problems in the past but recently, beachgoers in Fort Morgan, Alabama were taught a lesson. They found one of the rarest species of all sea turtles dead on the seashore because people did not clean up after themselves.
It was a Kemps Ridley sea turtle and the species is on the endangered list. It was washed up on shore with a beach chair tangled around its neck.
“We did it, turtles will not encounter chairs if it were not for us,” Richard Brewer, a Dauphin Island resident and Volunteer with Share the Beach, an advocacy organization for sea turtles, told FOX 10. “Heartbreaking. Truly heartbreaking.”
This turtle was one of the most endangered species of sea turtles in the world. The primary cause for them being on that list is because their eggs are over-harvested.
“And though their nesting grounds are protected and many commercial fishing fleets now use turtle excluder devices in their nets, these turtles have not been able to rebound,” National Geographic writes.
The numbers are so low that there were only 20,570 nests documented in Mexico in 2011.
199 nests were also found on the shores of the United States, mostly in Texas.
“Sea turtles are important enough that we will go to whatever lengths we can to protect them. It’s very heartbreaking to know that its something that could have been prevented,” Brewer said. “We had great news this morning, we believe that we have the first Kemp’s Ridley nest ever found on Dauphin Island, to find out that we had a mature female Kemp’s that just died because of something that could have been prevented is tragic.”
Many conservationists are reminding those who go to the beach to “leave nothing but footprints.”
“Come to the beach, enjoy yourself, have a great time. Make sure you left the beach cleaner than it was when you’ve showed up,” Brewer said.
People do need these reminders.
“This makes me so mad. How many hundreds of times do we have to ask people to pick their stuff up? It should just be common decency. I think I am going to print this out and carry it with me next time I have to ask,” the Fort Morgan Share the Beach Facebook page wrote of the deceased turtle.