Observing Oil Spill, Making Sure No Turtles are Harmed
Picture by: US Coast Guard, Specialist 2nd Justin E. Stumberg Picture taken on: May 5th, 2010
Methods used during the oil spill response included skimming oil, cleaning oil from beaches, and controlled burns of oil on the surface of the Gulf. NOAA and the Fish and Wildlife Service, as part of the Unified Area Command, developed and put into place where possible measures to help reduce some of the negative effects of the oil spill clean-up procedures on sea turtles and other wildlife. These measures included the monitoring and avoidance of turtle nests during mechanical beach cleaning, the placement of trained observers on certain on-water surface cleanup vessels, and requiring the use of turtle excluder devices on trawl nets used to skim for oil. Turtle excluder devices are a grid within a net that directs turtles toward an escape opening, allowing the turtles to swim free of the net.
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