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 17115 signatures
Number Date Name
17115 17 hours ago Kathi Ridgway
17114 18 hours ago Anonymous
17113 23 hours ago Phil Fitzgerald
17112 1 day ago Lorna Amsbaugh
17111 1 day ago Pat Parkin
17110 1 day ago James Tillotson
17109 1 day ago James Tillotson
17108 1 day ago Karma SamtenLhamo
17107 1 day ago patrick BOOT
17106 1 day ago Lary McKee
17105 1 day ago Kalliopi Grafkou
17104 1 day ago mauricio carvajal
17103 1 day ago Pam Wilbourn
17102 1 day ago Megan Baker
17101 1 day ago Rosina Cespedes
17100 1 day ago nichelle lee
17099 1 day ago Megan Prior
17098 2 days ago Martha Jaquith
17097 2 days ago Lou Insprucker
17096 2 days ago Kim Sellon
17095 4 days ago Gretchen lapoint
17094 4 days ago Seb Villani
17093 4 days ago Tony Menechella
17092 5 days ago Jamie Edgar
17091 5 days ago Bonnie Steiger
Next ->

Please take action by Jan. 5, 2018.

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

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