New Evidence Gulf Oil Disaster Killing Corals

from Wildlife Promise

Seven miles from the BP oil gusher, researchers have discovered new evidence of the disaster’s impact on Gulf of Mexico’s ecosystem:

Scientists have found evidence of “dramatic” damage to deep-sea coral near the site of the Gulf oil disaster, with one biologist describing it as a shocking find that “slapped you in the face.” [...]

The research team encountered an apparently “unhealthy” colony of Madrepora — a hard coral species — on November 2 at a depth of 1,400 meters. While some in the coral colony appeared normal, others were covered in a “brown material” and were producing “abundant mucous,” he said.

The scientists also encountered a community of soft corals nearby that also appeared to be affected. Extensive portions of the coral colonies were either recently dead or dying.

Keep up with all the latest Gulf oil disaster news at NWF.org/OilSpill.