WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- An autopsy revealed that a whale that washed up in Davao had 40 kgs of plastic in its stomach.
- Marine biologists from the museum that examined the whale urge the government to take action against those contributing to the problem by dumping their trash in the ocean.
- Thai marine biologists say that around 300 marine animals die every year in Thai waters because of plastic ingestion.
The pollution of our oceans is a growing problem. One testament to this is the body of a young whale that washed up on a beach in the Philippines.
An autopsy performed by marine biologists and volunteers from the D’Bone Collector Museum in Davao City, Mindanao revealed that the juvenile Cuvier’s beaked whale had 40 kg of plastic in its stomach. Images from the autopsy showed a seemingly endless pile of trash being taken out from inside the animal.
All the plastic is said to be the cause of the whale’s death through “gastric shock.” The museum posted a statement on their Facebook page saying the rubbish included 16 rice sacks, 4 bags like those used in banana plantations, and numerous shopping bags.
The biologists from the museum say that it was “the most plastic we have ever seen in a whale.” They urge that the government needs to take action against those who treat waterways and the ocean as a trash dump.
It’s alarming to note that a 2017 report from the Ocean Conservancy said that China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam dump more plastic into our oceans more than the rest of the world put together.
The owner of the D’Bone Collector Museum, a marine biologist named Darrel Blatchley, says that in the 10 years that they’ve autopsied the bodies of dolphins and whales, accumulated plastic in the stomach was the cause of death for 57 of them.
Last year in Thailand, a whale also died in the south of the country after ingesting 8 kg of plastic bags. Marine biologists estimate that around 300 various marine animals die yearly in the waters of Thailand due to ingestion of plastic.
Source: The Guardian