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Page last updated at 23:49 GMT, Friday, 6 August 2010 00:49 UK

Sea creatures helping to assess oil impact

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Scientists are turning to a vast collection of sea creatures from the Gulf of Mexico to help them assess the impact of the BP oil spill.

Hundreds of thousands of invertebrates have been gathered over the last thirty years by government researchers and are now being stored by the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

The samples create a detailed picture of how the ecosystem looked before the spill so that any changes can be accurately recorded. Jane O'Brien reports.

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