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March 17, 2011

WiLDCOAST and 5th graders from Coronado Village Elementary team up for Airport Art Project.

By Diane Castaneda

WiLDCOAST has partnered with a fifth grade class of Coronado Village Elementary to create a sea turtle conservation-themed art project made from used bottle caps for the youth art wall at the San Diego International Airport.  Since January 2011, students from the Coronado Village Elementary have been collecting bottle caps at recycling centers and with the help of family, friends, and other classrooms to create three murals depicting sea turtle related themes.

The group of students called STAT, which stands for Sea Turtle Awareness Team, have been diligently working to create an art project to be on display at the San Diego International Airport and that will show the problems that sea turtles are facing, as well as interesting facts about these creatures. With these murals, students want to educate the travelers who come from other parts of the world about our own unique visitors we have here in the San Diego Bay. 

This group of students is aware of the challenges sea turtles are facing.  Sea turtle population has been declining because of the commercial harvest of their eggs and meat, incidental bycatch of sea turtles through commercial shrimp trawling, and sea turtles dying by mistakenly eating plastic bags confusing them with food, among other things. 

San Diego Bay is the only place along the west coast of the United States where a small population of sea turtles is currently known to aggregate. It is believed that these sea turtles are migrating from the waters of Mexico.

WiLDCOAST has been a long time advocate for sea turtle conservation in Mexico and the United States, working on several campaigns to stop the illegal consumption of sea turtle meat and eggs in places like Guerrero and Michoacan, Mexico. Also, WiLDCOAST, in partnership with the Unified Port of San Diego, provides "Turtle Talk" presentations to kindergarten students across the San Diego area to teach them about this wonderful creature and way to protect the sea turtle from reaching extinction. To learn more about our sea turtle campaigns and what you can do to help, please click here.