Oil Spill Will Spell Trouble for Wildlife Long After It’s Repaired

The massive oil spill currently being battled in the Gulf of Mexico will impact tens of thousands of marine animals and wildlife.  The accident occurred in an area that is already environmentally fragile and at a time when many species are taking care of their young.  


But even after the leak is repaired and most of us move on to our normal daily lives, the animals in the region will be feeling the long term effects of the devastation.  For some, it may spell the end of their species. 


In 1989 a similar oil spill from the Exxon Valdez along Alaska’s Prince William Sound killed more than 250,000 animals that included: seabirds, sea otters, harbor seals, bald eagles and killer whales.  Twenty-one years later the affected area is still trying to recover from the disaster.


Before the Exxon Valdez spill, the region thrived with herring and salmon.  Those fish were a main food source for a pod of orca whales that populated the area.  After the clean-up, the herring never returned to the Prince William Sound and only a limited number of salmon have popped up over the years.  Today the pod of whales is considered “threatened.” 


Biologists in the Gulf are concerned that a similar ripple effect will hit their area, as well. 


It is too soon to know just how much damage the oil spill will bring to wildlife, but the Gulf coast is already comprised of fragile wetlands and marshes that have been worn down by humans and nature.  These areas are home to many endangered species.


Currently there are about 2,000 endangered seabirds known as “least terns” who have just laid their eggs on the Gulfport beaches.  Alison Sharpe, director of Wildlife Care and Rescue Center, Inc. told CBS News, “The spill has the great potential of wiping out the entire population of least terns along our coast area.”


And it is estimated that up to 5,000 bottlenose dolphins are in the surrounding waters, calving their offspring.  Scientists are concerned that the playful dolphins will try to explore the oil spill area or eat fish that have been exposed to the oil.  Both could cause long term harm to the dolphins and their young.


Also along the Gulf beaches in Texas and Mexico the entire population of the endangered Kemp’s ridley sea turtle are nested with their young for the next several months.  If the oil moves in their direction, the whole species could be gone.


A Louisiana charter boat captain named Bob summed it up by saying,”My kids will be talking about the effect of this when they’re my age.”  


Dr. Moby Solangi, director of the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Mississippi worries about the future of all marine life in the Gulf.  “Even if the oil stays mostly offshore, the consequences could be dire for sea turtles, dolphins and other deepwater marine life, and microscopic plankton and tiny creatures that are a staple of larger animals’ diets,” said Solangi.


The Gulf of Mexico is an incredible diverse ecosystem that is the natural habitat to fives types of threatened sea turtles and seven endangered or threatened groups of whales. 


Experts estimate that more than 400 species will be impacted by the spill.  Biologists, marine specialists and other wildlife authorities are utilizing their expertise to create a game plan to aid animals in the aftermath of the spill. 


But no one really knows how this will end or what the long term effects will be on the wildlife that calls this region home.  One expert called the disaster “the ultimate Pandora’s box.”


To Learn How You Can Help Click Here to Read Alicia Graef’s story – Help Wildlife Victims of Louisiana Oil Spill


Click Here to sign the Care2 petition to rethink offshore oil drilling.


Tell President Obama to stop offshore drilling.


Check out all of Care2′s coverage of the spill. 





Creative Commons - Zassie


David King
David King4 years ago

part two

President Obama said during his re-election campaign that he would cut over $4 billion of the subsidies going to Big Oil. On Wednesday, he releases the first budget of his new term, so let's work together to remind the president to follow through on his promise.

Sign our petition today to tell President Obama to end the Big Oil Billion Dollar Bonanza.
(please cut and paste the link to sign the petition)


David King
David King4 years ago

Congress has drafted a budget — three of them in fact. And tomorrow President Obama will release his budget to spend more than 1 trillion of our dollars. We need to ensure he makes good on his campaign promise to cut billions in subsidies to Big Oil.

Not only are these subsidies a drain on our budget, they are helping wreck the planet by ensuring we rely on fossil fuels for our energy needs — when clean, green alternatives are more than capable of powering our lives.

Please sign our petition today asking President Obama to end the Big Oil Billion Dollar Bonanza by cutting these taxpayer-funded subsidies from his budget proposal. Your signature will be delivered directly to the president.

Big Oil doesn't need the money, and we don't have the money to give. The five biggest oil companies on the planet made more than $110 billion in profits last year, while the President and Congress have been forced to make major budget cuts to important programs that protect our people and the planet.

Even worse, these subsidies make all of us investors in the biggest polluters on the planet. Each year the planet is warming faster than the year before, causing more extreme weather events, record heat waves, wildfires, droughts and floods across the planet. Burning more oil will only make the planet get warmer faster, and lead to even worse disasters than Superstorm Sandy.

President Obama said during his re-election campaign that he would cut over $4 billion of the s

L X4 years ago

All oil transportation systems spill. Period. No exceptions. Animals and water supplies get oiled, land gets ruined, homes have to be evacuated. Exxon-Mobil and BP have been the worst offenders, but no fossil fuel company seems to care about the consequences of producing, transporting or burning fossil fuel.

We need solar panels on every building, hybrid and all-electric cars, more efficient and biodegradable car batteries, windmills on every sizable land plot, and wind turbine farms where allowable.




Kirri N.
Colleen B7 years ago

Please watch the YouTube video explaining facts about Halliburton, also Goldman Sachs bank (major BP shareholder), in relation to this disaster. Evidence points strongly towards the planned rupturing of the huge and highly volatile methane gas deposit at this site, in order to cause a runaway disaster. This is Adrian Salbuchi, a geo-political economics analyst -- The Well From Hell.

Chloe Moll
Past Member 7 years ago

Absolutely blood boiling and heartbreaking.

Gita Sasi Dharan
Gita Sasi Dharan7 years ago

Once life is lost, it is lost forever.No repentance or explanations or reversible programs can bring it back.Carelessness and negligence should receive severe punishment so that nobody will repeat it again.

Jean-pierre Prieur

BP is going to attempt a "Top Kill" operation, but the success of it isn't assured. I do not think that BP is going to have any real chances to control the well until they finish the offset well they are drilling now. That may be sometime in August or September depending on drilling conditions and the weather (Hurricanes).

Mike K7 years ago

oil is unnecessary if gov't would just start implementing clean energy programs

Kimberlèy B.
Kimberlèy B.7 years ago

First of all I am sick and tired of everyone blaming Obama for every damn thing!! How stupid can everyone who does that be! He is only a man! One man!!! Like WTF he is doing his best! I bet half the people on here writing ignorance haven't sent their congressmen letters of discontent in regards to issues similar to this, but yet everyone has the nerves to blame Obama all the time!!! Foolish people!!!!!! Focus on the issues and YOU take appropriate measures to assure things like this don't happen because before this spill happened no one was concern about the drilling that has been taking place for years, real talk! Start to pay attention to everything that is going on in the world and we all need to take actions to prevent things like this from happening. The question now is how can we all help to make sure this doesn't happen again? And what could we all do to help out in this time of need? This planet belongs to us all and it will take the efforts of all to rectify this situation. So please enough with the Obama bashing and stay focused people! We all have let presidents like Bush/Bush blindside us with materialist things that have nothing to do with our survival. Man & Man working together is what has helped man to progress and move forward. Together we will make this world a more productive, healthier and fruitful place for all to live in. God bless this world and give us all the strength we need to defeat evil forces walking amongst us.

K Baines

Patrizia S.
Patrizia S7 years ago

This is so tragic!... No matter how much money they will pay for the clean up it will never be enough to redeem the massive damage cause to the environment Money can't replace life