Sunday, June 16, 2013

Turtle preservation plan

From the NY Post:

In a desperate bid to keep slow-moving turtles from causing delays at JFK, Port Authority officials are installing a massive barrier that will keep the critters in their natural habitat.

The plan is to deter the diamondback terrapins’ path with 4,000 feet of 8-inch-wide plastic piping along runway 4L, which juts into the bay near some of the native reptiles’ favorite area marshes, according to researchers.

“We’re trying to find a balance between nature and aviation,” said Port Authority spokesman Ron Marsico. “We don’t want to see the turtles get hurt, and this should keep the airport running smoothly.”

The turtles have made the airport’s runway part of their annual trek as they come on shore to nest, slowing service by forcing pilots to use other runways.

Marsico said airport employees removed around 1,300 turtles by hand last year during June and July, and that the new barrier will encourage the animals to nest elsewhere.

Dr. Russell Burke, a professor of biology at Hofstra University and a researcher at Jamaica Bay, thinks the plan will be effective, but is concerned that the barrier could make turtles more vulnerable to predators like raccoons.


Anonymous said...

We must do whatever it takes to protect these prehistoric creatures.

Anonymous said...

Boy. Those turtles are always sticking their necks out.

All kidding aside, bless those who stick their necks out to protect them.

Anonymous said...

These creatures also cause damage to jets when they get in the way of planes taking off and landing. Turtle carcasses are also slippery and attract birds. Both are antithetical to safe landing and takeoff operations.