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Gulf Spill Threatens 70,000 Turtle Eggs

Picture 1 

Courtesy of NOAA.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will coordinate the collection of 70,000 turtle eggs from 800 nests on Alabama and Florida beaches within the next two weeks, according to the Associated Press. If left in place, hatchlings from the eggs could be soaked in crude or poisoned by consuming oil-coated food.

The eggs, primarily those of endangered loggerheads, will be dug up by hand, packed in sand in Styrofoam containers, trucked to the Kennedy Space Center, and stored in a climate-controlled warehouse. All eggs will be hatched at the facility, and the hatchlings will be placed individually on Florida's east coast.

"This is an extraordinary effort under extraordinary conditions, but if we can save some of the hatchlings, it will be worth it as opposed to losing all of them," Chuck Underwood of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said."There's a chance of losing a whole generation."

--Riley Blanton

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