An autopsy was conducted on the dead whale, which found over 48 pounds of plastic in the stomach of the gigantic marine animal.
Over 48 pounds of plastic, including shopping bags, disposable dishes, a corrugated tube, and a detergent package with its bar code still visible, were found inside a dead sperm whale in Italy, the World Wildlife Fund has said.
The young female whale was discovered washed ashore in Porto Cervo, a seaside resort in the island of Sardinia, Italy. It was also carrying a fetus “in an advanced state of decomposition,” the WWF said.
Another whale was found dead only a month earlier on a Philippine beach with over 88 pounds of plastic removed from its body.
More than 1,000 assorted pieces of plastic were discovered inside a decomposing whale in Indonesia in November.
A sperm whale died in Spain last year after ingesting more than 60 pounds of plastic trash.
“Plastic is one of the worst enemies of marine species,” the World Wildlife Fund also said.
The whale in Porto Cervo was found on Thursday, according to a Facebook post by SeaMe Sardinia, a nonprofit organization that studies marine mammals.
“The amount of plastic found in the cetacean’s digestive tract was practically intact, and the proportion between the size of the animal and the ingested plastic is particularly significant,” it said in a statement on Monday.
Due to the terrible finds a ban has been declared on many single-use plastic products in the region, including disposable plastic straws, cutlery and plates.
“This sort of pollution afflicts the whole marine world, not just Italy, of course, but every country in the world has the duty to apply the policies to fight it: not today, yesterday.” – Sergio Costa
Those measures are scheduled to take effect by 2021. Italy’s environment minister, Sergio Costa, promised his country would be one of the first to carry out the ban.
“Is there still someone who says that these are not important problems?” he asked.