Gulf Oil Spill Real Threat To Wildlife
The Gulf oil spill has become a true threat to wildlife along the coast.
Pelicans struggled to free themselves from oil thick as tar that gathers in hip-deep pools, while others stretch out useless wings, feathers dripping with crude. Dead birds and dolphins have washed up onshore, coated in the sludge. Seashells that once glinted pearly white under the hot June sun are stained crimson.
Experts say the Gulf’s marshes, beaches and coastal waters, which nurture a dazzling array of life, could be transformed into killing fields, though the die-off could take months or years and unfold largely out of sight. The damage could be even greater beneath the water’s surface, where oil and dispersants could devastate zooplankton and tiny invertebrate communities at the base of the aquatic food chain.
…fishing guide [Dave] Marino [was] shaking his head, as he watched the oil washing into a marsh and over the body of a dead pelican. Species like shrimp and crab flourish here, finding protection in the grasses. Fish, birds and other creatures feed here.
“It’s going to break that cycle of life,” Marino said. “It’s like pouring gas in your aquarium. What do you think that’s going to do?”Click here for reuse options!
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