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More important ocean areas for whales and dolphin protection identified

Scientists and observers from many different countries have identified and mapped 36 new Important Marine...
captive dolphin

Las Vegas dolphin facility to close

Siegfried & Roy's Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat in Las Vegas is to permanently close....

WDC citizen science project nominated for Scottish nature award

The success of WDC's Shorewatch programme was acknowledged recently after being nominated in the Citizen...

Whale meat fetches record high at Japan auction

Sei whale meat is being sold at a record high in Japan according media reports...

New study suggests amount of microplastic in oceans could be much higher

A new global map of aquatic plastic pollution has revealed that rivers in the north west of the UK have the highest microplastic pollution discovered so far anywhere in the world.

Scientists from the University of Manchester took samples from 40 sites across the region with over 500,000 microplastic particles discovered in the River Tame alone.

Microplastics are small pieces of plastic less than 5mm in diameter and include items such as microbeads from washing products (now banned in the UK) and microfibres from clothing. During heavy flooding, the study discovered that 70% of the microplastics, consisting of over 40 billion particles, were washed into the ocean.

The findings, published in Nature Geoscience, suggest that the current estimate for the amount of microplastic pollution in the ocean (five trillion pieces) could in fact be significantly underestimating the true figure.

Once in the ocean, microplastics can end up in the food chain when they are consumed by marine life.

Find out more about why plastic is NotWhaleFood and how you can help.

About George Berry

George is a member of WDC's Communications team and website coordinator.