The articles here describe On Wings Of Care's involvement in the Gulf of Mexico following the explosion of BP's Macondo well off the coast of Louisiana in late April 2010. As of 2012 January, we have flown a total of about 500 hours doing aerial imaging and wildlife spotting over the Gulf since 2010 May. We flew scientists of all types -- chemists, geologists, geophysicists, physicsts, as well as wildlife biologists. We spotted for marine biologists in boats and found whale sharks, sperm whales, and other marine life for them. This enabled them to attach GPS tags to some and was a big help to their understanding of population numbers and migratory patterns. We could find more animals in a few hours than they could find in days with just surface vessels! In fact, we were so successful, that grants have been received to continue that work regularly, and we were called to do similar work for other marine life elsewhere. (See, e.g., our articles on humpback whales off the coast of Cape Cod, MA during the summer of 2011, and other work for whales, sharks and seals throughout the world.)
Throughout 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico, we also organized and led several boat and ground missions to systematically examine and collect representative samples of sand, sediment, marine life, and oil in water from beaches, coastal areas, and offshore. We collected samples from all beaches in western Louisiana east to Pascagoula, Mississippi, as well as from all of the barrier islands. These were handled carefully with full chains of custody, and sent off to several independent reputable scientific laboratories for analyses. We also helped summarize many of those results for public information and understanding. These data and results have been quoted in a majority of publications on these subjects.
Articles and slide shows throughout this "Gulf of Mexico" section of our website are samples of the kind of documentation we've performed and enabled there since 2010 May. They show the extent of the oil and visible consequences of the spraying of dispersant chemicals, effects on the Gulf marine life and coastal ecosystems, and the ongoing plight and behaviors of seabirds, marine mammals, and other marine life.
The articles are arranged both chronologically and by major subject matter. Under the main menu item "Preservation" and under its sub-menu item "Gulf of Mexico", you will find the following links:
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