Oil Weighing Down Wildlife
Shouldering the weight of heavy oil spewed from the Gulf of Mexico's Deepwater Horizon oil spill, a brown pelican struggles in sludgy surf on East Grand Terre Island, Louisiana, Friday.
Nearly 800 dead birds, sea turtles, dolphins, and other animals have been found in the Gulf and on its shores, according to federal authorities cited by the Associated Press. But the real story may be the rate at which animals are being affected by oil, which appears to have accelerated drastically in recent days.
Since opening six weeks ago—around the time the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded, initiating the Gulf oil spill—the Fort Jackson Oiled Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Louisiana has treated 203 oiled birds, more than half of them in the last four days alone, USA Today reported.
Gulf Oil Spill Pictures: Birds, Fish, Crabs Coated
The fallout from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill is increasingly visible, with masses of oil-laden birds and other animals now on Louisiana shores.