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Melissa Mayntz

Oiled Pelicans Nesting One Year Later

By June 19, 2011

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One year after the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion and subsequent massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, brown pelicans that had been oiled have been traced to the beaches of Georgia, where they are tending new nests. According to GPB News, at least 25 pelicans that had been released in Georgia after being cleaned and rehabilitated have returned to the area for this year's nesting season.

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources is currently monitoring the nests and chicks, and thus far the young birds are faring well. Oil can have devastating effects on birds, however, and parent birds that were affected by the spill may pass lingering contamination on to their offspring, though the fact that the young birds are thriving is a good sign.

Nesting Brown Pelican
Photo USFWS / Tom MacKenzie

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