Since the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill, populations of several animals in Prince William Sound, including seabirds and seals, have been in decline. This video adapted from KTOO suggests that the oil spill was not the sole cause of the shakeup in the ecosystem; rather, it proposes an explanation for why the populations were already in decline when the spill occurred. Many of the animals in decline share a common food: a fish called a sand lance, whose populations have shrunk with the steady rise in ocean temperature that began in the late 1970s.
This media asset was adapted from "Deliverance From Oil: Ten Years in the Wake of the Exxon Valdez" by KTOO.
© 2015 PBS & WGBH Educational Foundation. All rights reserved.