(Help Endangered Animals -Ridley Turtles)
P.O. Box 681231
Houston, TX 77268-1231
Date: April 27, 1997
To: Governor George W. Bush
From: Carole Allen, HEART (Help Endangered Animals -Ridley Turtles)
Texas Shrimpers are NOT complying with turtle excluder device regulations. Please refer to the report by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), issued after a thorough, undercover investigation by agents along the Texas coast last summer. This information has been made known to National Marine Fisheries Service. Sea turtle strandings are rising at an alarming rate in Texas waters.
Since we know from the investigation that certain shrimpers are law violators, action must be taken. We can not wait any longer for the federal government to take action, as we have witnessed very little action in the last few years. The federal/state closure will not take affect for another month. Endangered sea turtles are dying because shrimpers tie their Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) shut.
Texas should not harbor law violators along its coastline. We need Texas Parks and Wildlife wardens to check boats both at the docks and in state waters. Some of their boardings must be surprise boardings, as the shrimpers monitor their radios and know when Coast Guard boats are approaching and probably would know when TDPW boats would approach also. (See the HSUS report).
Please take action. Texas must not condone law breaking by the shrimp industry and killing of endangered sea turtles.