Friday, April 30, 2010

Another gloomy update! 5:00PM CST

I work in Pascagoula, near the Mississippi/Alabama line. As I told you in my quick update, we can surely smell the oil now. It is expected to reach us in the morning, and The Gulf Shores area on Sunday morning. I have highlighted the meat of the below article, in case you guys are getting tired of all this! We will be doing all we can with the animals, so I will be in and out of the weekend.

A Quick Cute Funny: The Shrimpers who are protesting have signs that say, We Would Work For Food If We Could. Sad, but cute.....

By CAIN BURDEAU - Associated Press Writer
MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER -- Heavy winds and high tides complicated efforts to hold back oil that threatened to coat birds and other marine life as it oozed ashore from the Gulf of Mexico on Friday. The White House responded to the massive spill by halting any new offshore oil projects until safeguards are in place to prevent rig explosions like the one that caused it.

The National Weather Service predicted winds, high tides and waves through Sunday that could push oil deep into the inlets, ponds and lakes of southeastern Louisiana. Seas of 6 to 7 feet were pushing tides several feet above normal toward the coast, and the wind was pushing oily water over the booms meant to contain it.

Several officials from President Barack Obama's administration descended on the coast Friday.

"I am confident we will get to the bottom of what happened here," said Interior Secretary Ken Salazar. "Those responsible will be held accountable."

His department announced it would send teams to the Gulf to inspect all platforms and rigs.

More than 200,000 gallons of oil a day are spewing from the blown-out well at the site of the Deepwater Horizon, which exploded April 20 and sank two days later. Crews are using at least six remotely operated vehicles to try to shut off an underwater valve, but so far they've been unsuccessful.

They are also drilling a relief well to decrease the pressure and slowing the leak, though that could take up to three months.

Meanwhile, concern grew about animals and plants on the ecologically fragile coastline.
A rescue operation at Fort Jackson, about 70 miles southeast of New Orleans, had its first patient Friday, a young northern gannett found offshore. The bird is normally white with a yellow head and long, pointed beak but was covered in thick, black oil. Workers with Delaware-based Tri-State Bird Rescue and Research use Dawn blue dishwashing soap to scrub any oil-tainted animals.

Down the coast, at the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport, Miss., scientists, veterinarians and researchers frantically prepared for the possible arrival of hundreds of oily sea mammals.

The nonprofit facility's director, Dr. Moby Solangi, said Friday the site will be ground zero for injured marine mammals from Texas to Florida.

Pools are freshly cleaned and prepared to handle sea turtles, manatees and dolphins. There are as many as 5,000 dolphins in the Gulf area between the Mississippi and Louisiana coasts and the oil rig, many giving birth right now.

"It's very bad timing," Solangi said. "We're going to have a lot of babies here. We're looking at a colossal tragedy

If you wanna read more about IMMS or make a donation to the dolphins and sea turtles here is the link to their website.
If you have ever been to our area, Dr. Solangi and his staff used to be Marine Life before Katrina. We will be working with their team to help the sea turtles and dolphins.

I will keep you posted, headed home for the weekend soon.

The Bumpkin

Oooooo That Smell

I am in Pascagoula, I am sick at my stomach from the oil fumes. We have had to turn our air conditioning systems off....This can't be good for us!

Swim, Swim, Swim.....Fly, Fly....Fly......

Love you all,
The Bumpkin

shhhhh it's a secret! why, why is it still a secret?

Captain John has just called from the dock. He was up to the wee hours. He took an old shrimp boat net that he had, and used a blow torch to cut it in pieces. He then attached it to long poles. He made his own scoops. Long handles, big nets! Do you love this man or what? I have also noted that something mysterious has happened to my stash of Dawn dishwashing liquid that I bought at the discount surplus warehouse. They are advising you us not to attempt to help the animals unless you are trained as the oil is toxic, and could cause harm to you. Sure, sure, I can just bet he's gonna play by those rules. He has also gotten calls for jobs, we will decide where he goes tonight when I get home. Will you pray for his safety? I know you will, I will return all of your emails, starting tonight, you know you all mean the world to us. Captain John just said on the phone, "Tell em' I'm all over it!"

All we can do right now, is just react the smartest, wisest way we can. Do you know how many people here in Podunk Mississippi have no clue what's happening. By now they know what's happening, they just don't know what an effect it will have on our lives.

I am so pissed that the only place I could find this map today is on the website for the BBC. Pisses me off, boy, it pisses me off, that they are hiding the facts. I know it's to divert panic, but damn people what the hell? These people have a right to know. Would you believe that one local newspaper reporter, actually wrote the words "a lovely rainbow like sheen is atop the water" What are you freaking kidding me?

I am not surprised however, as the forecasters in the UK were the source we relied on for Katrina. They were dead on. We learned then to go to them, for our information. They no more than Fashion across the big you Divas!

I am the big star in the middle of the picture, Lori The Shopaholic, and my nesting sea turtles at The Redneck Riveria are the star to the right.

Click HERE to see the most information coming out of the UK, watch the video, sorry couldn't embed it.

Here's another video, short sweet to the point.

John's Chandeleur Islands Concerns:

Headed our way......

We love you, and I can feel you all behind us..
Last quick note.......swim, swim,, fly, fly........that's what we can do right? I want you all to think just that swim, swim, swim, fly, fly,'s their only hope......
Love you all,
The Bumpkin

Read This! This Was The Problem That Caused This Crisis

This is what caused this crisis, make sure you read this. It was that
little bity article on the back page of all the coverage in our newspaper

HOUSTON — A 2-foot-long metal clamp that failed to cut a pipe on the ocean floor may be to blame for the catastrophe.
All subsea oil wells are equipped with steel blades known as shear rams that are supposed to slash through the pipe at the top of the well during dangerous pressure surges and close off the flow. A 2002 study commissioned by the Minerals Management Service, the agency that oversees the offshore oil industry, found 50 percent of the shear rams tested failed to cut through pipe and halt the flow.
The shear ram is part of a piece of equipment known as a blowout preventer that sits atop a well to reduce the force at which oil and gas travel to the surface.

Update on Environmental Impact

by Karen Nelson Reporter for The Sun Herald, my local newspaper.
The Gulf Restoration Network is worried the oil spill that could push ashore as early as this weekend is a “worst-case scenario” for the environment.
Biologists with USM’s Gulf Coast Research Lab took samples Thursday so they will have something to compare as the spill moves closer.

The Audubon Society and the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies were lining up workers and volunteers willing to be trained to handle oil-related animal injuries.

The state DEQ and DMR were coordinating with contractors to place booms in sensitive areas.
And state agencies, as well as the Sierra Club and Gulf Restoration Network, planned fly-overs to document the conditions of the Mississippi Sound.
“This thing is as big as Jamaica and we have enough booms to really protect maybe one reserve,” said Aaron Viles with the Gulf Restoration Network. “This is darn-near close to a worst-case scenario.”
The magnitude of the problem for fish and wildlife depends on how much of the spill gets close to shore and how long it stays.
With millions of acres of wetlands to protect from Louisiana to Alabama, the task is daunting, oil specialists say.
“It couldn’t be at a worse time,” said Mozart Dedeaux, education director for the Pascagoula River Audubon Center. “All the shore birds and sea birds are breeding now, anything that nests in the marshes.
“Some have hatchlings,” he said. “Eating infected fish or no fish at all, the babies could starve.”
Oil-coated birds can suffer hypothermia, dehydration, drowning and starvation, and become easy prey.
Dedeaux said at the worst, the spill also could affect river life, “but hopefully the currents from the river will keep it out.
“It’s all speculation. We don’t know anything,” he said. “It is like a hurricane, but in a way it’s not. We can board our houses up and leave for a hurricane. We can’t block the entire coastline of Mississippi.”
On the state and federal list of sensitive areas to protect are the barrier islands, the Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, the Pascagoula River area, Graveline and Davis bayous, the Biloxi Back Bay and Deer Island and the Bay of St. Louis and nearby marshes and bayous.
But there are many inlets and bayous in between, all of them nurseries for juvenile fish and shrimp, dependent on the marsh for feeding.
Read Hendon, an assistant director at the Research Lab, said wave action in the Gulf is churning the spill.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Quick update....

We are experiencing extremely high tides here for the next few days. Not a good factor, at all.
The waves are so rough due to weather conditions, that they were not able to burn at all today.
The winds are so strong blowing from the Gulf, that I can smell the salt. The skimmers can not operate, nor can the emergency crews trying to stop the leaks.
I am going to go home from work, gather all my information, and let everyone know what's going on.
We have heard from the Chandeleur Island Boat Captains, that they are seeing huge hunks so big they are not able to determine the size of a really, really, sticky tar like substance.
Captain John is on every Emergency Response list there is. I have to have everything he owns cleaned and ready to throw in the Marine Corps bag in case he gets the call. He could be gone for days, weeks, no telling how long. Wish some of your were here we could pull it together in a flash. I will see that sunset though, regardless.
They are in Emergency Management meetings now as we speak. Due to wave actions they were not able to do much about the leaks either today, they are just gushing away, three leaks, one they can not even find. Pumping 5000 ( I was wrong earlier there are 42 gallons in a barrel of oil) barrels a day into the Gulf. So 210,000 gallons a day minimum. That's alot of oil, did you fill up with gas like I told you to? Last time these rigs were down from Katrina the prices sky-rocketed to $4-$5 a gallon.

I also wanted to take a moment to thank all of you for your sweet comments and emails, they are literally keeping my spirits so high, I feel hopeful, more hopeful, than I probably should. To know there are prayers, happy thoughts, voodoo dances, and incense burning going on in our honor is more comforting than you could ever know. It's been another whole day of swimming and flying, so let's just count on that having been done, and keeping pouring out the hope.

We love you all,
Captain John and his Bumpkin On A Swing


Now I just want you to remember when you read this that you have already heard all this here. but why is the media so deceptive. I learned how manipulative that they were during Katrina, again they have reconfirmed the manipulation. It's on the news where you live now isn't it.? The Government should have been here from the beginning, what the hell were they thinking? It's too late now, it's 20 miles off shore, and in excess of 800 miles long. So when they say it's going into south Louisiana, that's only because it's the most southern. They should say it's going to hit south Louisiana first.

From the Associated Press, I highlighted for you again, if you need the quick version. This pisses The Bumpkin off, if it weren't for My John I would be like everyone else, clueless. It's a shame that we haven't learned our lessons and researched this for ourselves. Again, I wouldn't have if My John wasn't driving the boat. They wait till the last freaking second, and PANIC!

NEW ORLEANS -- A massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is even worse than believed (Bull hockey, they knew all along, just didn't tell us) and as the government grows concerned that the rig's operator is ill-equipped to contain it, officials are offering a military response to try to avert a massive environmental disaster along the ecologically fragile U.S. coastline.

Speaking Thursday on NBC television, an executive for BP PLC, which operated the oil rig that exploded and sank last week, said the company would welcome help from the U.S. military.

"We'll take help from anyone," BP Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles said.

But time may be running out. Not only was a third leak discovered — which government officials said is spewing five times as much oil into the water than originally estimated — but it might be closer to shore than previously known, and could have oil washing up on shore by Friday.

At the same time, there appeared to be a rift developing between BP and the Coast Guard, which is overseeing the increasingly desperate operation to contain the spill and clean it up.

Coast Guard Rear Adm. Mary Landry was emphatic at a hastily called news conference late Wednesday that the new leak was discharging 5,000 barrels a day of sweet crude, not the 1,000 barrels officials had estimated for days since the Deepwater Horizons drilling rig exploded and sank 50 miles (80 kilometers) off the Louisiana Coast.

Suttles disputed at the same news conference with Landry that the amount of oil spilling into the water had ballooned — or at the company wasn't able to handle the ongoing operation to contain it.

But early Thursday, he said on NBC that the leak may be as high as the government's new estimate. He said there was no way to measure the flow at the seabed and estimates have to come from seeing how much oil makes it to the surface.

"Using the satellite imagery and our overflights, we can now say it looks like it's more than a thousand. It's a range," Suttles said. He said the range was up to 5,000 (325,000 gallons) barrels a day.

The Secretary of Homeland Security has briefed President Barack Obama on this new information and the government has offered to have the Department of Defense use its equipment and expertise to help contain the spill and protect the U.S. coastline and wildlife, Landry said.

"It has become clear after several unsuccessful attempts to determine the cause" that agencies must supplement what's being done by the company, she said.

This all played out at the end of a long day as crews began an experiment to burn off parts of the slick — the latest in a series of high- and low-tech efforts to stop the oil leak, reel in as much of the oil as possible to prevent it from washing ashore and harming the fragile wildlife and plant life that dot the coast.

I will keep you posted. I'm going to the catch a sunset on the beach tonight, I will be thinking of all of you!

Pray that the wildlife are scared by the little fires and swim out as far as they can go.


The Bumpkin

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

wordless wednesday~Sometimes A Lady Needs To Sparkle


Oil Spill Update~Holding on to Hope

Sunset on Biloxi Beach on the Mississippi Gulf Coast

If you have stopped by from Shopaholic in Alabama, welcome to the swing,
My Captain John and I have been keeping up with the oil spill for a few days, we are in Ocean Springs just east of Biloxi. We like you are terrified for our beaches, and both the marine and wildlife animals that inhabit them. We know you are days away from the beginning of turtle nesting season. As animal welfare activists we are active each year in the protection of our sea turtles in your area. The timing could not be worse in our opinion. We send our prayers and best wishes to all of you. If you have pictures in the near future, please email them to I will keep everyone posted here, at the swing. To make this easier for all of you to follow I have marked both my location and your location clearly on each map.

From the weather channel. This is a little lengthy, not bad at all really, but will explain exactly what will happen. It's easy to follow, but I have highlighted certain areas if you need the quick version. I have also made personal comments in italic, throughout the article.
Will weather push oil to coast?
by Jonathan Erdman

Aside from the extreme difficulty of both containing and shutting off the ruptured oil well in the Gulf of Mexico, there is concern that weather could play a role in determining whether this growing oil slick, roughly greater than the surface area of Rhode Island, eventually is driven toward beaches or fragile ecosystems along the Gulf Coast.
First, let's pinpoint the location of the oil slick. Below is a high-resolution satellite image from NASA-MODIS. The grayish colored oil slick is circled. As of this writing, the slick is about 35 miles offshore of southeast Louisiana and about 65 miles SSW of Gulf Shores, Ala. This morning's paper says the oil slick is now more than 817 square miles.

As you can see on this map I have marked myself here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and Lori the Shopaholic in Gulf Shores, Alabama. In the future The Bumpkin will be marked with a heart and Lori will be marked with a sun symbol. The Shopaholic is 60-65 miles from The Bumpkin due East as the crow flies, or by water. The beaches of the Florida and Alabama coast are some of the top vacation sites in the south. This could drastically change the future of that area.

Right now, a cold front is sweeping through the Gulf Coast. West to northwest winds Tuesday will help drive the slick further offshore, not allowing it to make too much northward or westward progress.

Wednesday, north-northeast winds will diminish through the day as high pressure settles in by evening. This will be the last day in awhile that will provide favorable winds helping to keep the oil slick offshore.

The concerns begin Thursday. As high pressure shifts off to the east, and a developing storm swings out of the Rockies, winds will turn toward the southeast and increase. These winds will now help to move the oil slick toward the coast.

Pelicans on Chandeleur Islands

Due to its close proximity, the most vulnerable areas will be the Chandeleur Islands off eastern Louisiana, as well as the Delta National Wildlife Refuge southeast of Venice, La. You all remember that this was My Captain's worse fear. He is beside himself with worry about this refuge, and the hundreds of eagles that inhabit, Petit Bois, Horn, Cat, and Ship Islands. He will aid in any way he possibly can, I am sure of it, the "animal people" are prepared and attempting to be proactive, and will eventually have plans to be reactive, this is one thing I am certain we can count on.

Winds will only increase Friday into Saturday, as a frontal system approaches from the Plains, then stalls out. Unfortunately, by this weekend, the long-duration wind event could mean parts of the oil slick may approach parts of the Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and far western Florida Panhandle coast.

This is very discouraging for The Captain and I, in fact he will take the camera out tomorrow to take before pictures for our story.
In fact, it's possible this long-duration southerly wind flow may continue through early next week!
Latest story in our local paper:
By HOLBROOK MOHR and CAIN BURDEAU - Associated Press Writers
BILOXI, Miss. -- This time, it's not a hurricane that threatens to wreck their livelihoods - it's a blob of black ooze slowly making its way toward the Gulf Coast.

Hotel owners, fishermen and restaurateurs are keeping anxious watch as an oil slick spreads from a wrecked drilling rig site like a giant filthy ink blot. Forecasters say it could wash ashore within days near delicate wetlands, oyster beds and pristine white beaches.

Crews have not been able to stop thousands of barrels of oil from spewing out of the sea floor since an April 20 explosion destroyed the Deepwater Horizon, which was drilling 50 miles off the Louisiana coast. Eleven workers are missing and presumed dead, and the cause of the explosion has not been determined.

Louis Skrmetta, 54, runs a company called Ship Island Excursions that takes tourists to the Gulf Islands National Seashore, where white-sand beaches and green water create an idyllic landscape.

"This is the worst possible thing that could happen
to the Mississippi Gulf Coast," he said. "It will wipe out the oyster industry. Shrimping wouldn't recover for years. It would kill family tourism. That's our livelihood."

As crews struggled to contain the oil slick, Coast Guard officials said Tuesday they were considering setting fire to the contaminated water to burn off the crude. Pools of oil far offshore would be trapped in special containment booms and set aflame as soon as Wednesday.

"If we don't secure this well, this could be one of the most significant oil spills in U.S. history," Coast Guard Rear Adm. Mary Landry said.

A similar burn off the coast of Newfoundland in 1993 eliminated 50 to 99 percent of captured oil. However, burning the oil also creates air pollution, and the effect on marine life is unclear.

Ed Overton, a professor emeritus of environmental sciences at Louisiana State University who's studying the oil spill, questioned whether burning would work.

"It can be effective in calm water, not much wind, in a protected area," he said. "When you're out in the middle of the ocean, with wave actions, and currents, pushing you around, it's not easy."

He has another concern: The oil samples from the spill he's looked at shows it to be a sticky substance similar to roofing tar.

"I'm not super optimistic. This is tarry crude that lies down in the water," he said. "But it's something that has got to be tried."

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, birds and mammals are more likely to escape a burning area of the ocean than escape from an oil slick. The agency said birds might be disoriented by the plumes of smoke, but they would be at much greater risk from exposure to oil in the water.
Could this be their only hope?
Please continue to keep us in your thoughts and prayers.

The Captain will attempt a boat ride today to see what's going on first hand, and perhaps take a few pictures for you. I will keep you all updated throughout the next few days.


Captain John and The Bumpkin