Thursday, October 30, 2014

U.S. proposes putting four freshwater turtles on international endangered species list

The U.S. has proposed putting four species of freshwater turtles, whose meat is considered a delicacy in some Asian countries, on "an international endangered species list, in part to better monitor exports of the species," Ros Krasny reports for Reuters. "Under the plan, the common snapping turtle, Florida softshell turtle, smooth softshell turtle and spiny softshell turtle would be listed under the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), a global pact ratified by 180 countries." (Wikipedia photo: Common snapping turtle)

Turtle exports have been on the rise in recent years, with 811,717 live common snapping turtles exported from the U.S. in 2011, a 24 percent increase from 2009, Krasny writes. Live Florida softshell turtle and spiny softshell turtle or turtle egg exports also jumped from 2009 to 2011. The proposal is open to a 60-day public comment period. (Read more)

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