sea turtles

Becky Gregory / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A Pennsylvania man has been indicted on charges of trafficking over 3,500 protected turtles.

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania says David Sommers poached diamondback terrapins and their eggs from coastal marshes in New Jersey.

The turtles are protected under New Jersey law and by an international treaty.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agents allegedly seized over 3,400 diamondback terrapin hatchlings from Sommers' Levittown home in October.

There are fewer than 500 North Atlantic right whales left in the world. And now, one less: This weekend, one of the 45-ton creatures was found dead off the coast of Maine, completely entangled in fishing line — head, flippers and all.

This was not an isolated incident.

Pittsburgh Zoo Takes In Sick Sea Turtles

Dec 14, 2015
Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

In the summer months, Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles migrate closer to the New England shore where the water is warm, then back to the warmer waters of the Gulf Stream as seawater cools.

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

Fourteen very sick sea turtles are recovering at the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium after being stranded on the beaches of New England in what is being described as a “mass cold stunning event.”

The endangered Kemp’s ridley sea turtles are just a few of the more than 900 that washed up on northeastern shores after becoming hypothermic as ocean waters cooled. They arrived in Pittsburgh last Sunday, from the New England Aquarium in Boston.