Pollution and Pathogens

Pollution and Pathogens: Marine pollution, including plastics, discarded fishing gear, petroleum by-products, and other debris directly impact sea turtles through ingestion and entanglement. Light pollution disrupts nesting behavior and hatchling orientation, and leads to hatchling mortality. Chemical pollutants can weaken sea turtles’ immune systems, making them susceptible to pathogens.

Specific Burning Issue Hazards: Ingestible plastics and Styrofoam; Oil, tar and other chemicals; Light pollution; Pathogens (e.g. Fibropapilloma); Nutrients and sediments (e.g. agricultural runoff, sewage).

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