How oil spills affect wildlife

Wildlife and biodiversity are essential to our continued existence on Planet Earth. Without them, the crops we rely on to grow and feed us, the animals that eat the grasses and grains, would also begin to suffer. The sudden loss of any of these habitats and environments could have any number of catastrophic effects on our lives, let alone the animals that were affected by dramatic change. Most of these changes grow out of human actions. One of the worst of these is an oil spill.

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Crude oil is a thick viscous material that needs to be refined before it can be used by us. However, shipping it in the vast quantities that are required is extremely hazardous. When this has happened, wildlife has been deeply scarred and affected by it. At least now we have Spill Kits like those from to try and clean up the worst of the mess that results.

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Firstly, the animals, such as sea birds, think that the crude oil is solid and look to land on it. This totally coats them. Under the sea, marine life absorbs the oil, posing them and also making them inedible to the local fishermen. On the shoreline, beaches are covered in oil and become no-go areas for tourists. The sand absorbs the oil making it an unsafe environment for turtles and seabirds, as the welks and muscles become poisoned and so cannot be consumed.