On August 26, 2013 CBS News reported on the desert tortoise crisis that is taking place outside of Las Vegas. The desert tortoise is an endangered species and has been on the endangered species list since 1990. Despite their endangered species status, over 700 desert tortoises are schedule to be put down in 2014 by the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center near Las Vegas.
In the 1990’s developers in the Las Vegas area took on the pains of working to keep the desert tortoise safe. Since thing the desert tortoise has been kept apart from hikers, developments, and other threats and dangers. If your in the desert near Las Vegas and do anything to a desert tortoise you can expect to spend time in prison. Wildlife officials even set aside a large conservation reserve for the desert tortoise that is now called the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center.
It seems absurd that the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center, BLM, and other wildlife agencies that have been protecting the desert tortoise for all of these years will actually be killing over 700 of the animals that are at the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center. Currently the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center is home to about 1,400 and as their funding runs out the center is unable to continue to care for them all. Some say that the answer is to release the animals into the wild and allow them to leave the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center. Others say that at least some of the animals could be sent to zoo’s or other facilities.
Many people are willing to fight and do what they can to stop the endangered species from becoming even more endangered. There are a few petitions going around to try and stop the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center’s desert tortoises from being put down in 2014. The creators of the petitions hope that with publicity and support for the desert tortoise that they might be able to bring a stop to the planned killing of over 700 of the animals.
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