More than 300 vulnerable sea turtles found dead in the sea off the coast of Mexico

The turtle carcasses were brought ashore and buried in two pits (PROFEPA)

More than 300 vulnerable turtles have been found dead, entangled in illegal nets from the Mexican coast.

In a statement from the mexican Federal Attorney for Environmental Protection (PROFEPA) said that the amalgamation of the olive ridley turtles are found in the ocean off the coast of Oaxaca. Responding to the reports of the local population, PROFEPA, working with the Mexican Navy, the Mexican Turtle Center, at the Universidad del Mar, fishermen and officials of the Municipality of Santa María Colotepec, examined the grisly remains.

Olive ridley turtles are classified as vulnerable by the World wildlife Fund.


The turtles were dead for about eight days, PROFEPA said, noting that the reptiles had drowned after getting caught in the forbidden nets. According to the Federal Prosecutor, the animals were caught in nets used for the riparian of the fisheries on the rivers. These nets are described, are not to be used for fish, shrimp, and tuna from the ocean.

Determina @PROFEPA_Mx que enmallamiento the más de 300 tortugas marinas fue con red prohibida de pesca ribereña en costas de Oaxaca

— PROFEPA (@PROFEPA_Mx) August 29, 2018

The officials took the turtles’ stays on the shore and buried them in two pits. PROFEPA says that it will work with Mexico’s National Commission of Aquaculture and Fisheries CONAPESCA to inform local fishermen about the risks of illegal nets.

Olive Ridley turtles have their name due to the olive green hue of their shells, according to the WWF. “Their vulnerable status comes from the fact that they have a nest in a very small number of places, and therefore any disturbance to even one nest beach will have a huge impact on the entire population,” the organisation said.


The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources also lists the species as vulnerable.

The incident follows the death of more than 100 sea turtles, whose carcasses recently appeared in a wildlife sanctuary on the Pacific coast of the province of Chiapas.

Officials said that the 102 olive ridley, six hawksbill, and five Galapagos green bill turtles were found dead on the Playas de Puerto Arista Sanctuary between July 24 and Aug. 13.

The authorities are testing the water and perform necropsies to determine possible causes of death. They suspect choking, fish hooks, or harmful algal blooms may have killed the turtles.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

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