Center for     Biological     Diversity   

Stop Catching Wild Turtles for Turtle Races

Eastern box turtle

Turtles are dying off at an alarming pace -- rates never seen before -- under pressure from habitat loss, road kill and other threats. But one of those threats could prove fairly simple to tackle: turtle races. Annual turtle races strain native populations every year -- thousands of turtles are removed from the wild and raced in small towns across the country.

It's easy to believe little harm is done when turtles are caught, then released into the wild after races, but the fact is that these races can expose turtles to deadly diseases. Those diseases spread to wild populations when the turtles are released. Ranavirus is a sickness causing particular concern; it has led to widespread turtle, frog and salamander deaths in 25 states.

Many of the threats native turtles face are difficult problems to solve -- but turtle races have an easy fix. Just stop using turtles caught in the wild. Many towns already use creative substitutes for wild-caught turtles, such as river races using rubber turtles or races where people pull toy turtles on strings.

Sign our petition and ask communities to stop using wild-caught turtles in their turtle races.


1-25 of 15872 signatures
Number Date Name Location
15872 4 hours ago Stephanie Linam Benicia , CA , US
15871 11 hours ago Anne Mazzone Easton, CT , US
15870 1 day ago JANICE CHUI VANCOUVER, BC , CA
15869 1 day ago Anonymous San Jose, CA , US
15868 1 day ago Quentin Fischer Roanoke, VA , US
15867 1 day ago Shawna Heldt Livermore, CA , US
15866 3 days ago ilaria de simone momo, IT+12 , IT
15865 3 days ago nita patrick West Hollywood, CA , US
15864 3 days ago Charity Loveless Columbus, OH , US
15863 3 days ago Brenda Boutin Cincinnati Hamilton County, OH , US
15862 3 days ago carol Lipko Bath, PA , US
15861 3 days ago Nina Zabec Natrona Heights, PA , US
15860 3 days ago Amber Gilchrist elbert, CO , US
15859 3 days ago John Everett Grass Valley, CA , US
15858 3 days ago Anonymous Endicott, NY , US
15857 4 days ago Ann Roberts-Ostapack Horse Cave , KY , US
15856 4 days ago JUNE CAMPBELL TUCSON, AZ , US
15855 4 days ago Suzanne J. Dickson Sneads Ferry , NC , US
15854 4 days ago Nancy Loftin Toledo Lucas County, OH , US
15853 4 days ago Dianna Hoyt South Euclid, OH , US
15852 5 days ago Anonymous Gladbeck, ot , DE
15851 5 days ago patty senger cincinnati, OH , US
15850 5 days ago Lori Manfreda Beavercreek, OH , US
15849 5 days ago Anonymous philadelphia, PA , US
15848 5 days ago Joanna Swatek wroclaw, PL+69 , PL
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Please take action by Jan. 5, 2018.

Photo of eastern box turtle by Ken Thomas/Wikimedia Commons.

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