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Baby turtle spends six days excreting plastic only. Humans to blame

Baby turtle spends six days excreting plastic only. Humans to blame

Image source: Β© canva
Anna RusakAnna Rusak,28.12.2023 08:00

Plastic pollution in oceans is a grave problem that harms humans and marine animals. Recently, a young turtle that had been ingesting plastic waste since its birth was rescued. As a result, it pooed only plastic for six days straight. This incident underscores the dire consequences of human activity on the environment and highlights the pressing need to take action to reduce plastic waste.

Animals worldwide are suffering due to our excessive use of plastic. Pictures of seagulls entangled in discarded face masks or fish swimming around plastic straws no longer seem to impress anyone.

However, watching a film from Taronga Zoo in Sydney, where a baby turtle was rescued, can change one's attitude towards plastic pollution. The turtle excreted pure plastic for six days, highlighting the severity of the issue.

Six days of plastic poo

A tiny male turtle hatchling is the hero of this story. He was initially found in a rocky pool and then taken to a wildlife hospital. Despite having a hole in his shell and missing his right hind flipper, he was thought to be in good health.

However, when he began defecating, it was discovered that his condition was not as good as initially thought. For six days, he only passed pure plastic. Veterinary nurse Sarah Male reported this case on Sydney Zoo's Taronga Twitter account.

The turtle appeared to be in good physical condition, but when it started to defecate, it defecated plastic for six days. No faeces came out, just pure plastic. It was all different sizes, colours and compositions. Some were hard, some were sharp, and with some, you could tell the plastic had writing on it

- the Taronga veterinary nurse Sarah Male wrote.

Plastic in the oceans is a real problem

The turtle is now recovering well and will not be fed any more plastic, at least until it returns to the water. Sydney Zoo plans to release it back to the ocean after a period of two years.

While campaigns to clean up plastic from the ocean, such as The Ocean Cleanup, are proving effective, they are still not enough. Around 80 turtles are taken into a hospital in Sydney yearly due to plastic-related injuries, just like our hero turtle.

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Although it may be tempting to criticise Taylor Swift for producing a large amount of CO2 this year, this should not be used as an excuse for us to abandon our environmental choices and revert to using plastic straws. The story of a tiny turtle emphasises the importance of considering the impact of our actions on others, including our marine life. By reducing our use of plastic, we can help protect turtles, the oceans, and, ultimately, ourselves.

Source: The Guardian

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