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Kemp’s ridleys had been nearly wiped out by the mid-1980s, when fewer than 1,000 nests were laid each year. All six sea turtle species found in U.S. waters are endangered or threatened.

The escape hatches called turtle excluder devices “are not a silver bullet,” said Randy Pausina, assistant secretary of Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. He said other measures could include closing shrimping in specific areas when turtles are known to be there.