About 300 sea turtles die in Mexico from red tide

File-This June 16, 2016, file photo shows a Kemp's ridley sea turtle hatchling crawling across the beach at Padre Island National Seashore during the 4th public sea turtle hatching release. Federal regulators have vastly scaled back a plan to make more shrimpers include escape hatches for small sea turtles in their nets. A conservation group, the Center for Biological Diversity, calls it "a dangerous departure." The proposed rule would have required about 5,800 inshore shrimp boats to use the escape hatches, called turtle excluder devices or TEDs. The rule made public Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019, applies to fewer than 1,100. (Courtney Sacco/Corpus Christi Caller-Times via AP)

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexican environmental authorities said Thursday that 292 sea turtles found dead on the country’s southern Pacific coast since Christmas died as a result of a red tide algae bloom.

Volunteers, researchers and authorities managed to save 27 of the Pacific Green sea turtles, which had suffered paralysis.

Turtles found in and around the coastal resort of Huatulco had been unable to breathe properly or keep their heads up.

Volunteers kept some of them from asphyxiating by keeping them on land wrapped in wet blankets, or in shallow tubs of water with tiny life jackets.

The office for environmental protection said Thursday that autopsies showed the turtles had eaten sea salps, gelatinous blobs that may have accumulated the algae toxins.