Around the UK there is hardly a marine mammal without micro-plastic in the stomach. Researchers had investigated a total of 50 dolphins, seals and whales that were washed up on the British coast.
they found in all animals, at least one plastic particles, as they write in the journal “Scientific Reports”. “The number of the particles was an average of 5.5 per animal is relatively low. This suggests that the particles are finally excreted or high choked,” said main author Sarah Nelms, of the University of Exeter, according to a University statement.
As a micro-plastic plastic particles which are smaller than five millimeters. It can be absorbed through the water or indirectly via contaminated prey.
“It is shocking, but not surprising, that each animal has ingested micro-plastic,” said Nelms. In order to understand the possible impact of the particles or the chemicals contained within the animal health, further investigation is required.
84 percent of found plastic particles consisted of the researcher, of synthetic fibers can come from clothing, fishing nets, or toothbrushes. The other fragments come probably from items such as food packaging and plastic bottles.
The researchers found that the intestine contained a few micro-plastic as the stomach of the animals. Possibly, the particles remained there first.
in Addition, the Team discovered a possible connection between the cause of death and the recorded amount of micro-plastic: the animals that had died of an infectious disease had a little more plastic particles in their digestive tract.
“We can draw no firm conclusions on the possible biological significance of this observation,” said co-author Brendan Godley. “We are still at the very beginning to understand this ubiquitous pollutant. We now have a yardstick with which future studies can be compared.”
marine mammals such as whales, dolphins and seals are considered according to the researchers, is often as important indicators for the health of the Ecosystem of the oceans, in particular in relation to environmental pollution.