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It has both the version that’s up on Vanity Fair and the much more detailed, unedited version as I originally wrote it. The latter has not benefited from the deft editing of Vanity Fair’sDana Brown or  rigorous fact-checking of Ted Travelstead, which the version has. So double-check any facts in it with theVF version (although many of the facts are not longer there), and it also has new information that came to light since I turned in the original version. Thestudent of literary journalism and of the revolution in communications that is making everything shorter will find a comparison of these two texts interesting. Both have their merits.

The version has already had several responses. IUCN, the Geneva-based International Union for the Conservation of Nature, has posted it on its site. Gary Braasch, who took the fotos, only one of which was published with the posting, is on one of IUCN’s committees, and is responsible for that. Here is the link to all of Gary’s pictures : and …. seaturtle_2.htm I will soon be posting three of them and  a few by my son Zach. Also I got an email from a woman at Oceana, a new ngo devoted to the protection of marine life, who wanted to send me several of its reports, and I just got a few minutes ago an email from a woman based in Hudson, Quebec, up the St. Lawrence from Montreal,  who is studying the effects of oil on birds and wanted to know more about the study I mentioned about how birds reproductive behavior and neurochemistry is affected by the ingestion of only small amounts of oil. The study is by Lynn Muller of McGill. I also suggested to the woman from Hudson, who is focusing on the effects of oil on mallards, that she check out, if she hasn;t already,  the studies of Kevin Timoney and David Schindler of the effects of the Albert tar sands operations on wildlife and human health. Three years ago, some 500 migrating birds landed in one of the extremely toxic tailings pond, and only something like five survived. Most of the birds were mallards. This event evoked the same global horror and condemnation as the news that BP was burning turtles alive and the murder of Chico Mendes 22 years ago. The woman writes, “I am trying to prepare papers for publication on the impact oil has in mallards and the enormity of the impact – morbidity rather than mortality, essentially there are three targets for the oil; dopaminergic pathway, gonads and liver.” We can expect that there will be in the years to come, as more oil spills inevitably occur, much more research on this still poorly understood subject.

Sea turtles,  particularly the ridley, have become the symbol of the horror of the Gulf spill. Here’s a great story in the NY Times Sunday magazine on the relocation of the loggerheads to the east coast of Florida :

Let’s do everything we can to keep them with us ! Andale tidebuckas, musiclovas ! Soldiers of love (this is the title of Sade’s new album, singular soldier, actually).

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