"It is possible to trace oil from the BP spill as it moved through the first several levels of the Gulf’s food chain, starting with the microbes that broke the oil down, according to a scientific paper released today.
That paper, 'Oil carbon entered the coastal planktonic food web during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill,' suggests that a faint 'shadow' of the oil can be seen in the Gulf’s smallest creatures — plankton and copepods. Those tiny animals ate the microbes that ate the oil.
What’s present in the creatures is not oil. Instead, it is a unique form of carbon typically associated with oil and not otherwise seen in the Gulf creatures, researchers found. Carbon is the primary building block of all life, so it is present in bacteria, copepods, fish and all other creatures."