Another eye opening story about humanities consumable waste products ending up in the bellies of wild animals has emerged out of Germany.
Recently sperm whales that washed ashore along the North Sea shores of Germany were revealed to have commercial waste products in their stomach. Including car parts and plastic among other toxic waste for marine mammals.
The press release from Wadden Sea National Park in Germany, stated that many of the whales had stomachs FULL of plastic debris, including a large commercial fishing net, a 70 cm piece of plastic from a car and other pieces of plastic litter.
Researchers do not know why these beautiful whales had consumed these large items, but one such theory is that the whales may have thought the items were squid or other animals that the sperm whales are known to prey upon.
Environmental Scientist Robert Habeck, from the state of Schleswig-Holstein:
“These findings show us the results of our plastic-oriented society. Animals inadvertently consume plastic and plastic waste, which causes them to suffer, and at worst, causes them to starve with full stomachs.”
Nicola Hodgkins of Whale and Dolphin Conservation echoed that statement. She stated:
“Although the large pieces will cause obvious problems and block the gut, we shouldn’t dismiss the smaller bits that could cause a more chronic problem for all species of cetacean – not just those who suction feed.”
This recent discovery is like salt on the wound for humanities toxic pollutants and how they effect marine mammals and other creatures of the sea. It has now become widely publicized that there are floating islands of plastic that have formed across the oceans of the world. Not just the Atlantic ocean, but also the pacific ocean.
Southeast Asia has some of the most polluted oceans in the world, further emphasizing just how much of a footprint humanity is having on the biology and environment. Forcing some to question, at what point do the people of the world and governments begin to rethink just how we consume without proper waste management.