06 Feb '12, 12am

First assessment of Endangered Northern Rockhopper Penguins since 2011 oil spill

First assessment of Endangered Northern Rockhopper Penguins since 2011 oil spill

The speedy response from islanders gave birds the best chance (Credit: copyright Trevor Glass). Almost a year since thousands of endangered penguins’ lives were threatened by an oil spill on Nightingale Island – part of Tristan da Cunha, a UK Overseas Territory in the South Atlantic – a survey to assess the birds’ population has taken place. The bulk carrier, MS Oliva, ran aground on 16 March last year, a huge effort to rescue the penguins was launched. The ship was travelling from Brazil to Singapore with a cargo of 65,000 tonnes of soya beans and 1,500 tonnes of bunker fuel when it ran aground. As the ship broke up in the rough seas, the soya and oil were discharged into the waters around Nightingale. In the days that followed, the oil reached Inaccessible Island, a World Heritage Site, and Tristan more than 30km away. With the group of islands being home to over 65% of ...

Full article: http://www.birdlife.org/community/2012/02/first-assessmen...

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