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Reptile replicas: 19 turtle statues completed in Galveston

In this Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019 photo, pedestrians stroll past Hey Mikey's toward one of two sea turtle statues displayed in Galveston, Texas. The Turtle Island Restoration Network is installing statues to promote awareness for sea turtle restoration. (Kelsey Walling/The Galveston County Daily News via AP)

GALVESTON, Texas (AP) — Organizers say the first 19 Kemp’s ridley sea turtle statues in Galveston’s Turtles About Town project are completed and being set up.

The Galveston County Daily News reports the sea turtle statue project aims to raise awareness about the creatures and protecting coastal environment. Plans are in the works for about 20 more statues, decorated with bright colors by Texas artists.

Joanie Steinhaus with the Turtle Island Restoration Network says the last of the statue installations should be completed by the end of February. She says sponsoring a turtle involves a $3,500 commitment to pay for creation, shipment and installation.

Clay Cup Studios owner Amy Owens says she’s preparing to find sites for the additional sea turtle statues, thanks to an abundance of sponsors.

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Information from: The Galveston County Daily News, http://www.galvnews.com

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