Researchers found 30 plastic bags in the stomach of the sick whale that had to be euthanised at Vindenes Sotra, near Bergen on Saturday.
The Viltnemnda (Wildlife Board) euthanised the Cuvier’s Beaked Whale after it repeatedly became stuck in shallow water at Sotra.
According to NRK news, this was the first Cuvier’s Beaked Whale documented in Norway. When researchers opened the whale’s stomach during autopsy, it was a sad sight.
‘The stomach was completely packed with plastic. About 30 plastic bags in addition to some smaller plastic items. It’s very sad, said zoologist, Professor Terje Lislevand of the University of Bergen.
According to the broadcast news, the whale’s intestinal system was devoid of food, and all indications are that the whale felt pain.
‘There is no doubt about that. I daren’t estimate how long it took to fill its stomach with plastic bags. In this case, plastic particles built up and created a plug in its system’, said Lislevand.
Marine pollution is a growing problem, and according to the United Nations Environmental Program, the oceans harbour more than eight million tons of plastic garbage annually.
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Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today