Sea snot explodes near BP spill disaster site, threatening marine ecosystem

Via the BB Submitterator, Marilyn Terrell of National Geographic says,

Scientists studying the water surface near the BP rig explosion spotted relatively huge particles of sea snot, a mucus-like substance that phytoplankton produce when stressed. "It's possible that exposure to the Deepwater Horizon oil caused them to pump out more of the sticky stuff than usual." Sinking quickly en masse to the sea floor, the clumps of mucus may have temporarily wiped out the base of the food chain in the spill region. Adding oil to the snot makes marine mucilage, which can grow 100 mi. long.
"Sea Snot" Explosion Caused by Gulf Oil Spill? (Image: National Geographic News / Arne Diercks)

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  1. the clumps of mucus may have temporarily wiped out the base of the food chain in the spill region.

    …in areas where the heavier fractions of oil hadn’t already done so.

  2. I had no problems w/ going into the ocean before, but this cuts it. Sea snot! I am never going in the ocean again. Disgusting! I fell like I need to take a shower after reading this story, or at least sanitize my hands.

  3. Jeez, and I thought that recent BP funded study showed that most of the oil disappeared via hungry, hungry microbes.

    Could it be that study was mostly full of shit?

  4. @Cowicide Considering that essentially every other BB post on the DWH blowout has been proved by the passage of time to be based on uninformed scaremongering, my money’s on the science. (And no, the report you refer to was not “BP funded”. Too bored of this nonsense to waste any more time Googling up refutations, but once again I strongly recommend TheOilDrum.com as a great place to see various hypothesis and suggestions being thrashed out in the open by some knowledgeable, well-informed posters.

    1. And no, the report you refer to was not “BP funded”. Too bored of this nonsense to waste any more time Googling up refutations

      Too bored to be bothered, huh? But, you still took time out of your busy schedule to write your little misinformed comment thar, I see.

      Here, I’ll go through the arduous, time-consuming trouble for ya:
      http://www.propublica.org/blog/item/take-it-with-a-grain-of-sea-salt-gulf-microbe-study-was-funded-by-bp

      But, ah… oh, that’s right… $500 million never influences anybody anyway, correct?

      my money’s on the science.

      Yeah, and BP’s money is on the science too… in a boot on its neck sort of way.

      If you are so invested in science, then why not interrupt your busy schedule for this science (by the way, ironically it was published in the journal Science):

      Bacteria in the gulf mostly digested gas, not oil, study finds

      And, in between snacks, try these out:

      BP’s “Missing Oil” Washes Up in St. Mary’s Parish, LA

      WHOI finds Gulf of Mexico oil plume

      [cow sprints out door; goes on to continue busy schedule]

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