Wildlife groups sue for more protection of turtles

NEW ORLEANS (AP) ? Several wildlife protection groups are suing the federal agency that regulates fishing in U.S. waters. They claim the government isn’t doing enough to protect endangered sea turtles from drowning in shrimp nets.

The lawsuit filed Thursday in Washington claims the National Marine Fisheries Service violates the Endangered Species Act by letting some shrimpers operate without required turtle excluder devices on their nets. There are also some exemptions to the law.

The plaintiffs want a court order requiring all shrimpers to have the devices. They claim more than 1,400 dead and injured turtles have washed ashore this year.

The agency says it has not reviewed the suit and it typically doesn’t comment on litigation.