Tough Little Turtles Survive Oil Spill

photo map turtle released kalamazoo enbridge oil spill michigan
A map turtle ready for release into the wild. Photo via U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Maybe it's the shell. Turtles are tough when it comes to oil spills. While most birds covered in crude don't survive, turtles seem to be doing pretty good following the Enbridge oil spill in July near Marshall, Michigan.That doesn't mean oil shouldn't be kept in pipes (or the ground) to begin with. But it shows that animal rescue efforts by humans can help animals that aren't addicted to petro. Yahoo! Green reports that a wildlife rehab center set up by Enbridge to care for animals affected by the Enbridge spill is called "Snapperville," because almost 90 percent of the 2,300 animals cared for there are turtles.

Mayonnaise is used in the cleaning process, and almost 99 percent of the rescued turtles have survived. A veterinarian from Binder Park Zoo near Battle Creek, Michigan, says turtles are tough because they've been around a long time as a species—since the dinosaurs.

What follows is a video of a previously oiled softshell turtle being released to the wild.

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