A massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico is threatening the wildlife and may spread all the way to North Carolina. The oil slick began to spread soon after the April 20 explosion. Eleven people died and the oil continues to pour out of leaks about 5,000 feet (1524 meters) deep. Experts think as much as 5,000 barrels of oil are leaking into the water every day–that’s about 210,000 gallons (795,000 liters) of oil.
Animals like this dead Portuguese man-of-war (pictured) are beginning to be affected by the oil pollution.
Officials now plan to cover three leaks at the bottom of the ocean with a large box to contain the oil, which is now spreading closer to sensitive coastal marshes and wildlife breeding grounds along Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, and Alabama.
Photograph by Alex Brandon, AP