Alabama Coast

I visited several areas today around Gulf Shores on the south side of Mobile Bay. As was to be expected after seeing the oil really roll in last night there were a few heavily oiled birds in the area. One thing that was particularly disturbing to find were a number of oiled Snowy Plovers. Snowy Plovers are a candidate for listing under the endangered species act. Their numbers are already in jeopardy due to coastal development in their preferred habitat – basically undisturbed beaches and coastal dunes just beyond the high-tide/storm surge line. I’m afraid of what the months ahead hold in store for these shorebirds and the thousands of northern migrants that will use these beaches during migration and winter.


Heavily oiled adult Snowy Plover (Charadrius alexandrinus). This bird was oiled by the BP Deepwater Horizon oil leak. Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. Baldwin County, Alabama. June. (Gerrit Vyn)
Heavily oiled adult Snowy Plover (Charadrius alexandrinus). This bird was oiled by the BP Deepwater Horizon oil leak. Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. Baldwin County, Alabama. June. (Gerrit Vyn)



Heavily oiled immature Laughing Gull (Larus atricilla). Baldwin County, Alabama. June. (Gerrit Vyn)
Heavily oiled immature Laughing Gull (Larus atricilla). Baldwin County, Alabama. June. (Gerrit Vyn)


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