“Most Oil-struck Birds, Marine Life Die Uncounted”

More good information on the disastor in the Gulf from NRDC.
By Mira Oberman

FORT JACKSON, Louisiana — Most oil-struck birds and turtles will die alone and uncounted for at sea or buried in coastal wetlands, amid warnings the true toll from the Gulf of Mexico spill may never be known.

“Historically, they estimate that 10 percent of (oiled) birds are found,” said Rebecca Dunne, of Tri-State Bird Rescue & Research.

“Others sink or they’re scavenged.”

Some 1,075 birds — 633 of which were dead — have been recovered in the 50 days since the BP-leased Deepwater Horizon rig sank spectacularly some 52 miles (84 kilometers) off the coast of Louisiana.

It took weeks for the massive, undulating slick to reach shore and nearly half of those birds have been found in the past 10 days.

Complicating rescue and recovery efforts are the sheer size of the slick and the fact that so much of it remains offshore. Dead birds sink in a matter of days. Oiled turtles and dolphins rarely end up on beaches.


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