Starting just 80 miles to the west, from Pensacola Beach and on to Alabama, the beaches were hit a lot worse. And a University of South Florida scientist told HuffPost those beaches, thanks to a "superficial" cleanup job by BP, remain contaminated.
In some cases, the beaches look clean at first glance - certainly as compared to when they were covered in brown oil - but they "weren't cleaned up very well," said Ping Wang, an associate professor of geology at USF whose research teams have been monitoring the shoreline.
"There are small tar balls everywhere on the back beach, and there's buried oil that wasn't cleaned up," Wang said.
But shh! The oil is supposed to have vanished like magic. These aren't the droids you're looking for. Move along.