Scientists have been extremely concerned and alarmed after reviewing the necropsy reports from twenty-nine sperm whales who were beached on the coast along the North Sea, in Germany.
The stomachs of some of the whales were filled with plastic fragments, like litter, 13-meter-long finishing nets and large plastic car pieces. Scientist speculate that the animals confused the litter with food, like quid or such. It is hard to deny that it is all a consequence of our complete disrespect for marine life by letting massive amounts of plastic to be disposed in the oceans daily.
Robert Habeck, environment minister for the state of Schleswig-Holstein said that this is a warning for out plastic focused culture. Animals are tricked into eating the plastic we use daily, which inflicts great pain on them and makes them even die with stomachs full of plastic waste.
Nicola Hodgkins of Whale and Dolphin Conservation stressed that on top of the big pieces of plastic that block the gut, the small pieces of plastic also cause continuing health issues for all our ocean species.
Unfortunately, this isn’t a new issue. In 2011, a dead whale was discovered on the Greek island, Mykonos with a stomach full of over a hundred plastic bags and other plastic waste.
The plastic isn’t necessarily the direct cause of death, according to National Geographic. Some of the young whales misguidedly swam into shallow waters in search of food that has become scarcer. The shallow water couldn’t support their heavy weights and caused internal organs failure and heart issues. In some of the cases they contemplate that the whales tracked an agony call from a fellow whale and they all got trapped in shallow waters.
Some scientists suggest that whales being mammals and having evolved from land animals, in stressful situations like to revert to shallow waters where they can remain immobile for some time, which puts them in risky situations.
No matter what the reason is for whales ending up in shallower waters it is a fact that their bodies being filled with plastic waste puts them at a higher risk and causes additional damage on their already stressed system.
We, as humans, cannot deny the responsibility for creating all this plastic waste out of which almost 80 percent ends up disposed in our oceans and consumed by marine life. It is a truly distressing state.
Mankind must acknowledge its dependency on other forms of life in order to prevent tragedies like these from happening.