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Gulf oil spill: More tar balls wash up; turtles, dolphins found dead

May 12, 2010 | 10:49 am

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries confirmed Wednesday that tar balls that washed up on the beach at South Pass in Plaquemines Parish, La., are from the Deepwater Horizon spill.

Biologists found the sticky, dark-colored blobs on the beach at South Pass Monday but did not confirm that they were from the rig until Wednesday, said Department of Wildlife and Fisheries spokesman Bo Boehringer.

The Louisiana Bucket Brigade, which is tracking the oil spill and its effects on local communities, also confirmed the presence of a dead turtle on shore at the Bay of St. Louis, Miss. Locals also saw dead fish on the beach, an hour east of New Orleans.

On Tuesday, the National Marine Fisheries Service said that dead dolphins also had been found in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, but that such deaths are common in calving season, when they swim into shallow waters. Tests are being conducted to see if the dolphins were affected by the oil.

-- Alana Semuels