Sperm whales in the Mediterranean are dying at the hands of plastic pollution. Roughly one-third of dead whales in Greek waters had stomachs blocked by plastic pollutions such as shopping bags, according to the Pelagos Cetacean Research Institute.
The research involved the post-mortem examination of 24 specimens stranded in January 2016 and found plastics of all sizes—including large pieces from cars. Other factors may also be at play: Noise from vessels, dehydration, and stress all contributed to the whales’ demise.
The number of dead whales in the region is the largest since 2001. One of the young whales was found with hundreds of pieces of plastic in its stomach. "The young whale suffered an excruciating death," Pelgaos director Alexandros Frantzis related to The Times. "We alone are accountable."
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