La. Shrimpers Take Charge in Oil Spill Cleanup

On a perfect day for shrimping, A.J. Naquin was on his boat, out in the water.

But for now, his shrimping days are over. Naquin was skimming oil. Lots of oil.

Naquin's part of the Cajun flotilla, local fishermen, mostly shrimpers. They were fed up with BP's failed response. So they took over.

"We have to clean it up. Somebody's got to clean it up," Naquin told CBS News correspondent Mark Strassmann. "Why not the shrimpers who know the area?"

Special Section: Gulf Coast Oil Disaster
Oil Spill by the Numbers

Oil has oozed onto this nesting island for brown pelicans. Nearby, a dead turtle floated in the greasy sheen.

The Cajun flotilla just hopes they're not too late.

Naquin's crew finds oil -- it doesn't take long -- and then lowers absorbent booms.

All the leaked oil gets scooped up and absorbed into the white boom. In as little as half an hour, the dirty booms have to be replaced.

The crew cleans until they run out of boom or run out of daylight.

Dean Blanchard is the largest shrimp broker in the Gulf.

He calls what's happening out here "Cajun Ingenuity."

"That means a Cajun will figure out how to do it," he said. "Every day the Cajuns are showing the oil people how to do their business better and better."

Every day, Naquin hauls back bags of filthy boom, instead of the shrimp he has fished since he was fifteen. He has no choice.

In this area, there's an indefinite ban on all shrimping and fishing.

Many of the local fisherman wonder the whether the damage will be so severe, that the ban could go on for good.

"What else can we do?" he said. "Without oil or shrimp in south Louisiana, we're finished."