Sea Turtles are part of a growing number of dead fish, animals and birds she and other Mississippi residents have photographed washing in with the tides in recent weeks. For Shirley, a trip to the beach no longer provides the same relaxing refuge as before.
One Mississippi resident said:
"It’s very upsetting. I have never found anything like this until after the oil spill. It used to be if you found a dead dolphin or turtle it was front page news around here. Now it’s no big deal.”
There have been 38 dead or stranded turtles collected in Mississippi this year, most in the past few weeks.
Officials say possible causes could range from infectious disease, sudden shifts in water temperature, biotoxins such as red tide or the impact from the BP oil that polluted the area.
The only other Gulf state to report a rise in on-shore turtle deaths this year is Texas with 48, more than twice the number counted in 2009–the year before the BP oil blowout.
That year, the total number of on-shore turtle deaths in the Gulf shot up to 248, nearly five times the number from the previous year.
Scientists say it may be impossible to know if dolphin and turtle strandings are due to the BP oil blowout.
We have to find a cause to these poor animal deaths, and we need to stop it soon!
[Image via WENN.]