Featured Image Credit: Greenpeace Philippines
By Sarah Sharkey
A sperm whale has been found dead on the beach of Cabo de Palos in Spain. An autopsy showed that the whale swallowed 64 pounds of plastic before its death.
The experts from El Valle Wildlife Rescue Centre carried out the autopsy procedure and concluded that the whale could not digest or excrete because of the amount of plastic that was in its system. Basically, the plastic filled up his digestive system, so nothing else could get through. Although the official cause of death was peritonitis, an infection of the stomach lining, he would have eventually died of starvation because he was unable to digest anything. A death like this one is far too common in sea creatures. Every day we see turtles, seals, dolphins and more negatively affected by plastic in their ecosystem.
The whale was a very large animal, 33 feet long, but even it was not immune to the dangers of plastic ingestion.
The many plastic bags and nets in this young male sperm whale’s digestive system are prompting officials to do more about the plastic problems facing our oceans. Hopefully, their actions will help.
Plastic is a huge problem in our oceans, it affects every creature in it. From the tiniest hermit crab to the largest whale, plastic is having a negative impact on their lives.
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