The Hawksbill Turtle, so-called because of the shape of it’s head and ‘beak’, is a critically endangered sea turtle that has seen its numbers decline by eighty percent in the last hundred years to the point where there are now only around 15000 nesting females in existence worldwide.
You can adopt a turtle for as little as £3 per month and you will receive a wonderful turtle adoption pack containing the following items.
Turtle adoption pack details
When you adopt a turtle, you’ll be helping to protect this beautiful marine creature, its habitat and other animals that live in the same environment. You will also receive an adoption pack that includes:
- A cuddly toy turtle
- A fact booklet about turtles
- A beautiful turtle print
- A greeting card
- WWF’s tips on reducing everyone’s environmental impact
- Three issues of Insight magazine throughout the year with updates about turtles
Threats and challenges to the turtle species
The hawksbill turtle is still hunted illegally for it’s attractive shell, which is confusingly referred to as ‘tortoiseshell’ or ‘bekko’ – this is often then made into jewellery or ornamental objects. Hawksbills are also hunted for their meat, and there is a trade in hawksbill eggs. Hunting a species that is facing extinction is something that must be stopped and the WWF is working to this end.
They are often caught in nets and lines from fishing operations (‘by-catch’) and over 250,000 marine turtles are killed in this way every single year.
Destruction of tropical reef areas that they inhabit, along with gloabl tourism causing disturbance to the beaches on which they lay their eggs and climate change are all further factors in the decline of this and other marine turtle species.
Historically it has proved difficult to create a universal conservation policy for the area inhabited by the hawksbill sea turtle since its habitat spans several geopolitical boundaries.
Furthermore there has been an attempt by Cuba to have the hawksbill turtle moved to a lower risk classification purely so that trade may be legally resumed – a move that is almost universally opposed.
There are seven species of marine turtle and all but one are classified as critically endangered or endangered
The hawksbill sea turtle spends almost all of its entire life in the water and generally speaking they will only ever emerge from the water to lay their eggs.
Female hawksbills will always return to the same beach that they were born on – mating every 2-3 years and producing in excess of 140 eggs laid in clutches, usually beneath vegetation. Curiously, it seems that the gender of the hatchling depends largely on the temperature that the egg is kept at.
The hawksbill turtle feeds mainly on sponges found in shallower coastal waters but only feeds on certain types of sponge – due to this is it is quite vulnerable to deteriorations in reef conditions.
Where will my turtle adoption donation money go?
AdoptATurtle.org.uk proudly supports WWF and all turtle adoption funds go directly to WWF and aid them in their hawksbill turtle conservation efforts. WWF fund research into protection of the hawksbill sea turtle and it’s habitat as well as working to highlight and reduce the illegal trade of tortoiseshell or bekko. WWF also works to raise awareness of the plethora of environmental issues that affect us all – particularly climate change and global warming.
Your support will also help fund other essential WWF conservation work around the world.
Examples of WWF turtle conservation work
- WWF works to promote sustainable fishing practices and reduce illegal fishing – responsible for so many turtle deaths each year.
- WWF works to create, protect and preserve Marine Protected Areas in a bid to provide a safer enviromnent that cannot be encroached upon.
- WWF works towards governmental bans on commercial turtle harvesting.
- WWF works to raise awareness of climate change and pollution and their effects on the world around us.