A highlight from Sea Turtles May Lose Their Nesting Places In Georgia To Ship Canals

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Late one summer night tour groups on a georgia beach. Lockout they come across a loggerhead sea turtle nest as its hatching. Oh this was a couple of summers ago. The tiny turtles scramble up out of the nest ensuring their flippers in a rush to the ocean. Now when a nest hatches it's called a boil. There's so many turtles it ends up being. Impossible to keep count as they bubble up from the sand so cool long georgia takes pride in protecting and tracking the turtles that come here to lay their eggs but now wildlife officials say the. Us army corps of engineers threatens the same turtles. The state has worked to save the core plans to change. Its schedule for dredging shipping channels. The dredging keeps them deep enough for ships to get to and from the ports here but the equipment can hurt and kill wildlife biologist. Mark dodd with the georgia department of natural resources says the dredges are like giant. Underwater vacuum cleaners the pumps just suck material off the bottom sand and mud and they can pick up sea turtles from the ocean floor to dot says after getting sucked in the animals hit a blade like a propeller and and don't thrive so the past few decades the us army corps of engineers has kept. Its dredging here to the winter months to minimize killing sea turtles. But last summer the core got permission from the trump administration to dredge in the southeast any time of year and it wants to start dredging off the georgia coast in may which is when the adult females. Start coming here to lay their eggs. Killing nesting females is especially devastating conservation. Efforts catherine ridley is with the georgia advocacy group. One hundred miles were sending these turtles through with chipper but the core says conservation is actually the reason for the may dredging or really not trying to do some evil thing here nicole. Benin with the agency says the change in schedule is to take into account other protected species across the region from north carolina down to puerto rico for instance atlantic sturgeon and north atlantic. Right whales which are on the georgia coast in the winter when dredging has been happening none of us wanna feature it'll harmed. The goal is to try to figure out how to do everything better for older easy. Advocates are skeptical. They say in thirty years of winter. Dredging there's no proof that it's hurt right. Whales but in two thousand nine and experiment with summer dredging was stopped after killed six turtles in two weeks. Georgia officials are pushing back on this federal plan. But they may not have any power to stop it for npr news. I'm molly samuel in atlanta. This message comes from npr sponsor. Ford the all electric mustang mach e and twelve foot rocket.

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