Plastic debris in marine ecosystems is a serious global issue and is the research focus of leading scientists across the globe. Almost 700 marine species have been documented to interact with plastic, most commonly by ingesting smaller pieces and becoming entangled in larger pieces. Among the most affected species are sea turtles. Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology together with their international collaborators developed a novel quantitative method to quantify the effects of plastic on marine animals. This method successfully shows that plastic ingestion by sea turtles might be causing population declines, despite a lack of strong effects on individual turtles.
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Source: Science Daily
Image credit: Michelle Roux/Coral Reef image bank.