Thursday, May 23, 2013
May 23 - World Turtle Day
World Turtle Day has been sponsored yearly since 2000 by American Tortoise Rescue, to bring attention to, and increase knowledge of and respect for, turtles and tortoises; to encourage human action to help them survive and thrive.
World Turtle Day is celebrated worldwide in a variety of ways, from dressing up as turtles, or wearing green summer dresses, to saving turtles caught on highways, to research activities. In schools, World Turtle Day lessons plans and craft projects encourage the children to learn more about the plight of these creatures.
This is how YOU can help save turtles and tortoises for the next generation:
- Do not take home a wild turtle as a pet. Instead, purchase a captive bred animal from a reputable store or breeder. Never remove turtles or tortoises from the wild unless they are sick or injured.
- Never release a pet turtle into the wild. They may not have the nutrients needed to survive the cold winter, or they may not be native to the area they are being released in, and therefore should not interbreed with wild turtles.
- Join a local Turtle and Tortoise club to learn more.
- If a tortoise is crossing a busy street, pick it up and take it in the same direction it was going - if you try to make it go back, it will turn right around again!
- Help keep beaches and other natural habitats clean. Never leave trash, and pick up garbage left by others if you see it.
- Write letters to legislators asking them to keep sensitive habitat preserved or closed off to road vehicles, and to prevent offshore drilling that can lead to more endangered sea turtle deaths.
In 2013, over 160 free Turtle Day Lesson Plans and teaching materials were sent out to classrooms for use with over 5500 students. Lesson plans were provided by the Turtle and Tortoise Preservation Group, an organization that is open to all people interested in the welfare of chelonians (learn a new word today, too!).
Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:
- Champlain returned to Québec and began to rebuild the Habitation from its ruins and to build the church of Notre-Dame-de-la-Recouvrance in 1633.
- After being convicted of piracy and of murdering William Moore, Captain William Kidd was hanged in London. in 1701.
- The Jesse James Gang robbed a bank in Richmond, Missouri in 1867, at the cost of $4000 and 2 lives lost.
- An Act of Parliament authorized the creation of the North-West Mounted Police in 1873; the prefix Royal was added 1904.
- The Ottawa Mint Act received Royal Assent in 1901.
- The ship Komagata Maru arrived at Vancouver in 1914 with 376 Sikh immigrants aboard. They were not allowed to land and the ship was forced out of Vancouver on July 23.
- Walt Disney incorporated his 1st film company, Laugh-O-Gram Films, in 1922.
- Singer Pauline Julien was born in Trois-Rivières, Québec in 1928.
- Longtime Social Credit premier of Alberta William Aberhart died in Vancouver in 1943. He was succeeded by Ernest Manning.
- BBC ordered 13 episodes of Monty Python's Flying Circus in 1969.
- New Brunswick became the first province to draft statutes in both official languages in 1974.
- Also in 1974, American singer-songwriter "Jewel" Kilcher was born in Payson, Utah.
- Tsutae Sato died in Vancouver in 1983, at the age of 92. He arrived in Canada in 1917 to teach at the Japanese Citizens School. He and his wife established scholarships in Japanese studies at UBC. In 1978, Sato was awarded the Order of Canada.
- Star Trek: The Next Generation finale aired in syndication in 1994.
- In 1995, an Edmonton judge acquitted Marilyn Tan of charges that she had injected her former lover Conrad Boland with HIV-infected blood.
- Alberta-born professional wrestler Owen Hart fell 15 m to his death during a performance in Kansas City in 1999. His wife brought a suit against the wrestling federation for endangering Hart's life in pursuit of TV ratings.
Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!