The Latest from Operation Toxic Gulf – Ocean Alliance’s Collaboration with Sea Shepherd of Animal Planet’s “Whale Wars”

ocean alliance
 
Ocean Alliance is coming to the end of its summer expedition in the Gulf of Mexico looking at the effects of the 2010 BP Oil Disaster on Gulf wildlife, particularly sperm whales. Iain Kerr, CEO of Ocean Alliance, is concerned, because of the Gulf oil spill and all that the Mississippi dumps into the Gulf of Mexico after traveling though the heartland of America, that the Gulf sperm whales could be the most polluted in the world.  The principle goal behind this campaign is to see if the massive use of dispersants in the Gulf was the right course of action for the wildlife in the Gulf.  While the dispersants removed the oil out of sight (and out of mind) there is compelling evidence to suggest that the dispersants moved the oil throughout the food chain and made the oil and dispersant mixture more bioavailable (easier to absorb or ingest by animals).  
 
A rarely answered question is what causes whales stress – typically the bigger the animal the less that stresses it. To try and answer that question Ocean Alliance did preliminary testing of its “Snot Bot” (developed by Olin College), a flying robot that will collect stress hormones, viruses, bacteria and DNA from whale blows.

About E.J.

Artist, researcher, writer, spiritual traveler of this fascinating orb we inhabit, lover of life and all it has to offer. Hi everyone out there in GMG land. My name is Ellen “E.J.” Lefavour (a/k/a “Ejay Khan” – the pseudonym I used during my years as a political activist artist). I moved to Cape Ann in September of 2010, and was thrilled to be invited by Joey to become a daily contributor to Good Morning Gloucester in December of that year. I am a painter, photographer and writer who has lived and worked as an artist for 20 years, since leaving the corporate world in 1990 to pursue my passion. My contributions to GMG will consist of images (either my paintings, photographs, montages or the occasional video) and a little history about the image, called “Did you Know?” I hope to come up with tidbits of information that people don’t already know, or had forgotten they knew. As I am new here, everything is new and fascinating to me, especially the amazing history, so bear with me if I post something that is common knowledge – I’ll eventually come up with something that’s new to you. As an artist, I will also write about the incredible art scene on Cape Ann. Please take a minute to comment on my posts, like them or not, especially if you have corrections or something to add, as that is how I, and all of us, learn. Have a Good Morning Gloucester, and a blessed day.
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3 Responses to The Latest from Operation Toxic Gulf – Ocean Alliance’s Collaboration with Sea Shepherd of Animal Planet’s “Whale Wars”

  1. Can you tell us more about Snot Bot. Is it being used elsewhere also? Can it take the place of those horrid harpoons researchers use to get plugs of blubber from whales to get DNA samples?

  2. Good work and much needed! I think we have yet to see the horrific damage this oil spill has caused to animals and humans.

  3. So grateful to be part of a community where our neighbor and friend is concerned about mother earth, her inhabitants, the wildlife, and our effects on it all. Good energy going in a good direction, for sure. PEACE!

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