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Public Flocks to Oiled Beaches on 4th of July in Alabama

Local sea turtle groups are working hard here in Alabama to protect the few sea turtle nests along these white sand beaches from BP beach cleanup crews and the oil washed ashore. Teams go out every night to ensure protocols are followed which forbid lights along nesting beaches, and these team members all have OSHA training to ensure they are working safely in a toxic environment. Some sea turtle nest relocations have begun for Gulf beaches.

Thousands of Gulf residents have descended on oiled beaches to enjoy a break in the stormy weather and are swimming, picnicking, and playing on the oily sands and in the oily waters. On the beaches in Alabama, which have been hit hard by oil for over a month now, the BP crews have mixed oil into the sand. Sand coated tar-balls are mixed in all over, and the sand now has a orange tint where it once was white.

Luckily, sands in the upper dunes where sea turtle nests can be relocated are still pristine. If oil can be contained to the high-tide line and below, there is hope that the nesting habitat for future generations of sea turtles can be protected during this catastrophe.