Plastic Pollution: 'Hidden Chemicals' in Seabirds
Small chemicals in Seabirds, via plastic pollution, have added even more threats in the wild.
By 2050, It’s been estimated that 99% of Seabirds will have ingested plastic, according to current trends.
This is because Seabirds will mistake the plastic for food, floating in the water.
Many researchers have found chemicals in Seabirds ‘liver and fatty tissues,’ via plastic which had been from the sea, according to the BBC.
They say that the plastic had entered ‘at levels thousands of times higher than normal.
It’s noted that albatrosses, which are wild Seabirds, revealed a similar outcome.
Researchers have also fed pellets to chicks, who are nesting, so they investigate the effects of plastic exposure.
These pellets are known to be plastic.
They say that nearly 1 half of the world’s Seabird population is in danger, and 28% classed, as toxic pollution is a ‘pervasive and growing threat.‘
This work was carried out by a Hokkaido University student from Japan, called Shouta Nakayama.
‘These findings provide direct evidence of Seabird exposure to plastic additives and emphasize the role of marine debris ingestion as a source of chemical pollution,’ the Japanese student said in their Current Biology journal.
A team of researchers had looked at streaked shearwater chicks, who were living on a cliff in Japan, in Awashima Island.
It’s been noted that they took samples from wild sea birds in the Hawaiian islands, which included the sooty tern, two types of albatrosses and species of booby, and the brown noddy.
Dr. Samantha Patrick, says that researchers need to find out whether plastic materials, with chemical traits, will have detrimental effects on Seabirds reproduction and survival state.
Ms. Patrick is from the University of Liverpool and isn’t linked to the study.
Ms. Patrick says that ‘this study demonstrates that plastics do lead to raised levels of contaminants in Seabird chicks.’
‘This is an important step forward in our understanding of how plastics affect marine species.’
Ms Patrick also said that studies who examine the Seabirds ingestion, are determine to understand the ‘hidden’ effects of plastic on seabirds.