7 Jul 2010

The Plastic Waste That Is In Our Oceans Claims Yet Another Life.

I headed out to my local patch this morning at Killard NR.

I arrived at Ben Derg beach and there were a couple of Dunlin on the rocks and a couple of pairs of Ringed Plover. The Ringed Plover both have young. One has two and the other one. There were also a few Oystercatchers on the shoreline making a racket and as I approached two flew off and I noticed a dead one and was even more shocked to see the way that it had died. It had this plastic item jammed over its lower mandible. When I turned it over and felt its breast it was skeletal. So had basically died of starvation.

www.birdguides.com Photo of the Week 15.7.2010

Infact the moment it put its beak into this object it had signed its death warrant. I had great difficulty myself in removing it from the beak. Once it stuck it in the tiny hole on one side the metal strips on the other side allowed it to push further but not out again.

I dread to think how long it took this bird to die.

It is just so depressing to see the amount of plastic waste that washes up daily on the shoreline mainly I suspect from fishing boats. There was also another piece of litter on the reserve being two semi deflated balloons which were probably released at some party or charity function. Releasing balloons should be banned.


Sharon M said...

This is truly sad, indeed. I just don't understand not caring about the world in which we all live.

Hilke Breder said...

I put a reference to your blog and one of your photos on my facebook page. http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1118912609
We have to spread the word, have photos of victims published in newspapers and popular magazines...

Out walking the dog said...

Sad, indeed. Poor animals.

Timothy Belmont said...

I occasionally do beach-cleans with the NT and this is typical of the waste we collect. We gather by the trailer-load sometimes. Utterly disgraceful.

Dawn Fine said...

this breaks my heart...what pigs we humans are.

Ceider said...

"releasing balloons should be banned"....agreed, a stupid practice.

Bird said...

We need to end out love affair with plastic crap. This poor animals fate must happen so many thousands of times over, invisibly to us.

We need to dispose of our rubbish carefully, recycling whatever possible.

We need to not buy disposable plastic.

We need to see the manufacture of said pointless plastic crap stop.

Oh, and until all that happens, take a bag to the beach with us and litter pick when we can.

Vernon said...

It really is amazing how much plastic there is out there and what it is impacting.

I once found an Oryx in the Namib, one of the most pristine place in the world, which had died of starvation. When these large herbivores die of starvation, they often have a full stomach (eating anything in desperation). This individual had a stomach full of plastic bags, probably from farm fences. It is everywhere, and needs serious, world-wide attention.

Darlene! said...

How horrible.

Not only does plastic cause a problem to shorebirds, but along lakes discarded fishing line is also a big problem. When I noticed a female killdeer full of eggs trip over some fishing line, I went to go pick it up and must have found yards and yards of wire in that area. A lot of the shorebirds, ducks and coots are having babies right now, too. They need their legs!

Sandy said...

Is it the "widget" inside a draft Guinness can?
Letter to the local press with pictures is the correct thing to do. The fishing boat fleet are largely responsible for rubbish on the beaches around Ardglass and Kilkeel. This is only a microscopic proportion of the crap in the sea, but it would be a start.
Depressing stat - flick a cigarette butt into the road in a seaside town and it eventually washes into the sea, where it apparently can last indefinitely, and be a size which appeals to numerous animals as food.

Gyorgy Szimuly (Szimi) said...

Incredible irresponsibility. Humans are so stupid. We have an endless way to make a difference. :(

How would it be to repost this article into the shorebird blog with these images? Please drop me a line if you are fine with it. Credit will be provided.

Cheers, Szimi

Unknown said...


Anthony J Dixon said...

A truly awful sight, but well done for highlighting it.

JRandSue said...

What sad looking image,i hope it gets the message across.

Cheryl Rutherford said...

I volunteer for the World Parrot Refuge and have posted this on our facebook page and twitter, for *all* birds and animals.



I always pick up the plastic ring things that hold a six-pack together if I see one on the street and take it home and cut it up. I'd hate to think of it strangling a poor creature just because someone was lazy.


Ecochampion said...

This is a very upsetting picture, but show a clear demonstration on how plastic pollution is effecting the wildlife.

Eco Picture Of The Day said...

This picture has been added to our Eco Picture Blog

Unknown said...

Isto nos assusta!
o planeta está um caus
e 100% da culpa é nossa (humanos).
Fico imaginando esta ave deve ter sofrido por muitos dias, sem poder comer ou beber, até morrer!
- - -
To seguindo...
Sou um deficiente Físico, apaixonado por aves, mas não tenho nenhuma em cativeiro, gosto de vê-las na natureza e fotografar é meu hobby.

Jisohde G. Posser - Unaí-MG, Brazil. 120409 19.00