Former NBA superstar Yao Ming has more than one passion in life. The NBA player and passionate baller clearly loves animals as much as he loves dominating on the court.
Sea Turtles 911 has made it their mission to save sea turtles from extinction, and the admirable organization released several rescued hawksbill sea turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata) during a public event in an effort to expand conservation education and outreach. The public display was set up so that local people could have the rare and beautiful opportunity to experience the stunning moment marine turtles are returned to the ocean.
The towering athlete gently released rescued green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) into ocean waters while his four year-old daughter gave the animals a sweet wave good-bye. He said, “I think it’s very important to raise awareness in our country about protecting wild animals and passing it on to our next generation like my daughter.”
Frederick Yeh, the founder of Sea Turtles 911, said, “In those moments of watching a marine turtle swim for freedom back to nature, people grow mindful of how breathtaking sea turtles are within the vast ocean expanse, and this blissful experience leads them to an epiphany that turtles belong in the wild, and not in the market.”
Yao Ming has been a loud voice in China, advocating for animals and aiming to end the market for illegal wildlife products. Supporting the endangered sea turtle is just another way this former basketball player turned environmentalist advocates for the animals he loves and adores. Ming said, “We have to work together to convince more people to join our journey to reach a beautiful future.”
We hope Yao Ming’s advocacy efforts make a difference in China’s outrageous consumption of endangered sea turtles.
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