The Utah Prairie Dog (Cynomys parvidens) is the smallest of the Prairie Dog species. Between 1925 and 1975 the population was reduced in size by nearly 87% by poisoning, habitat loss, and introduced plague. They were classified as endangered as part of the Endangered Species Act in 1973, and then reclassified as threatened in 1984.
The Leatherback Sea Turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) is the largest known sea turtle, averaging 6 ft in length and weighing over 1,000 lbs. They travel immense distances and can dive as much as 4,922 ft deep.
The Pacific Leatherback Sea Turtle was recently named the California State Marine Reptile, and has been listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act since 1970. The Pacific Leatherback population has been dropping rapidly in recent years. The main threats, according to scientists, are accidental deaths due to commercial fishing (especially longline), sale of sea turtle eggs, loss of nesting grounds due to beachfront development, and ocean pollution; especially the ingestion of plastic bags and other debris.
For more information and to help sea turtles go to Turtle Island Restoration Network at www.seaturtles.org
For more information on the Leatherback Sea Turtle go to: