FWS Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Response
Conserving the Nature of America
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What We Are Doing

Credit: USFWS

Credit: USFWS

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has sent hundreds of personnel into the Gulf of Mexico region to respond to the Deepwater Horizon/BP oil spill. We are working with BP and many partners to do everything we can to minimize the impact of the oil spill on fish, wildlife and habitat.

Our people are preparing for potential oil impact at 36 wildlife refuges that line the coasts of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. We are conducting aerial and ground surveys to assess the damage, and recovering oiled or injured wildlife to be cleaned, healed and released in safe locations.

Refuges at Risk

There are 36 National Wildlife Refuges at risk from the BP Oil Spill. These precious national resources are home to dozens of threatened and endangered species, including West Indian manatees, whooping cranes, Mississippi sandhill cranes, wood storks and four species of sea turtles.

We are searching for oiled wildlife throughout the spill region, rescuing injured birds and animals, and assisting in the joint effort to ensure they are safely cleaned and released.

The Threat to Wildlife

Many species of wildlife face grave risk from the spill.

Birds can be exposed to oil as they float on the water or dive for fish through oil-slicked water. Oiled birds can lose the ability to fly and can ingest the oil while preening.

Sea turtles such as loggerheads and leatherbacks can be impacted as they swim to shore for nesting activities. Turtle nest eggs may be damaged if an oiled adult lies on the nest.

Oil has the potential to persist in the environment long after a spill and have long-term impacts on fish and wildlife.

More information: Effects of Oil on Wildlife and Habitat


Trajectory Forecast -- NOAA map
For current trajectory forecast click the map.

Deepwater Horizon Incident - Situation Status Map

For more Maps of the area go here -- http://www.fws.gov/home/dhoilspill/maps.html

Last updated: January 25, 2011