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Ingested marine debris

Playing with regurgitated plastic


Ingested marine debris, namely plastic, is a serious threat to the survival of seabirds & turtles.  An excellent example are albatrosses at Midway Atoll, which feed upon surface-dwelling squid or buoyant flyingfish eggs.  Adults accidentally swallow plastic then fly home to feed their chick via regurgitation.  Unfortunate youngsters end up with more plastic then food in their stomach and lack sufficient nourishment to survive if they are unable to expel those pieces.  Carcasses of dead chicks usually reveal a load of multicolored plastics, including lighters, bottle caps, toys, glow sticks, tampon applicators, etc.