Monday, July 5, 2010

Home Sweet Home

We were all set to go out for one more day on the water and leave the following day, July 7th. We turned on the weather channel first thing that morning to see what was awaiting us that day and saw that a low was hovering just under our survey area. Not good news. We still attempted to go out; we arrived at the lab and noticed that none of the state workers were launching any boats that morning either. A gentleman we had seen several times working at the state lab swung by the lobby, where we were anxiously watching the radar and simply said, “Y’all won’t be gettin’ out today now”. And he was right- these weather conditions were hideous and we would not have seen a dorsal fin even if it popped up directly next to our boat. We all decided to call it a day and a trip, for that matter. We packed up all of our belongings and took off from Grand Isle. We headed to Pascagoula, Mississippi again so that we could drop off the boats for the next trip and then decided to keep moving so the next day of driving would not be so intense. We finally settled near Pensacola, Florida and hit the sack. The next morning we had some breakfast and hit the road again, making it home around 4 o’clock that afternoon. I could not have been more excited to see our beautiful city’s bridge and cross over it, coming home to my sweet pup Henry.

Photo courtesy of Deepwater Horizon Response Photostream- PENSACOLA, Fla. (May 4, 2010) Kayakers at Naval Air Station Pensacola detour around oil containment boom at Sherman Cove aboard the base.

What a week and a half! A great experience, but, again, a humbling one. It was amazing to see how many people from all over the country were pitching in to help with the spill. Some of these individuals have been helping down there for weeks and months, taking time from their family and loved ones. Seeing first hand how this spill has affected the environment is heartbreaking,
but seeing all of the effort people are contributing to help and correct the situation is encouraging at the same time. I am so appreciative of the researchers who allowed me to accompany and help them with this important project. Knowing efforts are continuing will help me stay positive in this otherwise grim situation. Always keep in mind that even if one feels helpless when hearing about situaions like this, there is always something one can do from home to help—keeping your mind Green and doing your part from home is always beneficial to wildlife as a whole.

Photo Courtesy of Deepwater Horizon Response Photostream- LAFOURCHE PARISH, La. – Workers, contracted by BP, clean up oil on the beaches in Port Fourchon, Louisiana during night operations

I appreciate all of the support from FOLKS (Friends of Lake Keowee) to the crew in Greenwood, South Carolina and beyond! I hope that you all enjoyed following along through my journey in Grand Isle. Stay tuned for future efforts and always feel free to send any questions our way! Take care everyone!

This is Shelley Dearhart, Educator at the South Carolina Aquarium- Sigining off!

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