2012 April 18 Wednesday
Gulf of Mexico
This month On Wings Of Care has been supporting a large group of scientists who are carrying out a long-planned mission to study the state of the ocean floor in strategic areas of the Gulf of Mexico. These include places of known natural gas and oil seeps, as well as areas where persistent and significant surface oil slicks have been observed since the BP oil pollution disaster of 2010. Today, OWOC flew out to an area in Green Canyon, far offshore in the deep blue water about 180 nm south of New Orleans and 160 nm southwest of the infamous Macondo well, to meet scientists aboard the NOAA ship Endeavor.
We saw a fair amount of oil, some in expected places and some not. We saw no wildlife except a few sea birds near ships. Not a fin, not a spout, not a shadow. Not a dolphin, whale, sea turtle, shark, ray, or tuna. We're hoping that it's because we arrived too soon after the storms, or perhaps the weather patterns have contrived to change these animals' travel patterns, and we'll see them in these areas later in the year, the way we've seen them here in years past. But a flight over the Gulf without seeing wildlife is rare for us, and a disappointment.Read the article and see the photos and video here!