Dangers posed to Marine Life by Plastic Pollution have once more come to the surface when a dead Sperm Whale washed up on a beach in Spain. It had ingested nearly 30 kilograms of plastic waste that blocked its digestive system. The whale was a 10-meter-long juvenile, and the autopsy has revealed that the nature of trash it had ingested included plastic bags, and a whole lot of other plastic-based products. These had blocked its digestive tract.

According to Radio Australia, experts have identified the cause of death as the inability of the whale to digest or excrete the rubbish.

In their opinion, death would have occurred from damages to its internal organs.

Diet of sperm whales

Marine life survives on a large variety of fish, and the extent of plastic pollution in the oceans is a matter of concern. When it comes to sperm whales, their diet usually consists of giant squid, octopus, small sharks, crabs, shrimp and fish. They can also dive to great depths in search of food. In view of this death, the local administration of Murcia has intensified patrolling of the beaches as a part of its anti-litter campaign.

An official of the Murcian Government admits that the plastic pollution in seas and oceans is a major threat to the well-being of marine life. It is a global issue because history has shown that many animals get entangled in the trash or ingest the waste that leads to fatalities.

This trend must be checked

Plastics have entered our lives in a big way, and since they are non-biodegradable, they will continue to be a major threat to not only the environment but also to marine life. When the plastic waste lands in the oceans, it keeps accumulating and destroys the ecological balance. It is necessary to educate people and take measures to eliminate our dependence on throwaway types of plastic products like cups, plates, crockery, drinking straws, etc.

Steps have already been taken along these lines with deposit return schemes for plastic bottles.

Science Alert adds that the death of the sperm whale on the beach in Spain should be an eye-opener. People must realize the dangers and be encouraged to do away with single-use plastics. That will reduce the impact of plastic pollution on the ocean ecosystems. An example is the levy of a nominal charge on plastic bags at supermarkets – it has been implemented and has led to an 80 percent drop in the use of plastic bags across England.