Whale Tragically Dies And Is Found With 40kg Of Plastic Inside It
Warning: Graphic Images
A 4.5-metre-long whale washed up in the Philippines on the weekend, marine experts have declared it died of "dehydration" and "starvation" after consuming 40 kilograms of plastic.
If you think you've read this story before, you have, or a similar one at least -- there have been multiple animals found with plastic in their guts in the past year alone.
This juvenile male curvier was found in the town of Mabini on Saturday.
Darrell Blatchley, owner of the D’Bone Collector Museum in Davao City, who helped conduct the necropsy, said there was so much rubbish in the whale's stomach that it was unable to ingest anything else.
The amount so large "the plastic was beginning calcification," he told CNN Philippines on Saturday.
Among the contents in the whale's belly were plastic bags including 16 rice sacks, four banana plantation style bags and multiple shopping bags.
Because whales get their water from the food they eat, it meant this one also died of dehydration.
Blatchley pleaded with the Phillippine government to take urgent action against the use of single-use plastics.
"The Philippine people are a proud people, sadly it's not in being clean or taking care of the environment," He said. "In the last 10 years, we have recovered 61 whales and dolphins, of which 57 have died due to fishing nets, dynamite fishing, and plastic garbage. Four were pregnant. This cannot continue."
It's not the first time plastic has killed a whale, and it's not only happening in the Philippines.
In November 2018, a dead sperm whale washed up on a beach in a national park in Indonesia.
It had six kilos of plastic in its stomach, including 115 plastic drinking cups and 25 plastic bags.
More than 80 pieces of plastic rubbish were also found in a pilot whale that died in Thailand in June, according to Reuters.
While the whale managed to spit out five plastic bags, a large team of veterinarians couldn't save him.
A fourth whale, this one found in Spain in February, had 30 kilos of rubbish in its intestines and stomach.
It's not just the large mammals being impacted either -- other animals are suffering too.
A CSIRO report released in March found balloons are to blame for the deaths of one in five seabirds who ingest them.
While seabirds in arctic colonies more than 160 kilometres from the nearest human settles, have laid eggs containing chemical additives.
According to Australian scientists, more than half of the world's sea turtles have plastic in their guts as millions of tonnes of rubbish is dumped into the oceans around the world, every year.
While countries around the world are working to reduce single-use plastics like bags, straws and cups, the World Wildlife Federation warns that if humans don't make a drastic effort to curb pollution habits right now, the amount of plastic discarded into the environment will double by 2030.
Our oceans to be hit hardest.