Light tan streamers snake across Chandeleur Sound in this detailed natural-color satellite image from May 5, 2010. The streamers are probably ropes of oil from a leaking well in the Gulf of Mexico. The streamers surround Freemason Island and arc through Chandeleur Sound west of the Chandeleur Islands. The image is from the Advanced Land Imager on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) satellite.
The Chandeleur Islands are low, sandy barrier islands that are constantly being reshaped by storms, wind, and waves. Together with the Breton Islands to their south, they form the Breton National Wildlife Refuge. A variety of seabirds and shorebirds inhabit the islands, including the endangered brown pelican, least tern, and piping plover. Thousands of brown pelicans and other shorebirds are currently nesting on the islands, and sea turtle nesting season is approaching, says the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
- Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Response, the official site of the Deepwater Horizon unified command.
- Current information about the extent of the oil slick is available from the Office of Response and Restoration at the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration.
- Information about the impact of the oil slick on wildlife is provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. (2009, July 20). Breton National Wildlife Refuge. Accessed May 7, 2010.
NASA Earth Observatory image created by Jesse Allen, using EO-1 ALI data provided courtesy of the NASA EO-1 team. Caption by Holli Riebeek.
- EO-1 - ALI