A Turtle’s Journey: Plastic bottles with bite marks washing up in Mobile County

A Turtle's Journey

DAUPHIN ISLAND, Ala. (WKRG) — Dozens of plastic bottles have washed up in the Gulf of Mexico with apparent sea turtle bite marks.

Volunteers with Share the Beach (STB) sent the following pictures to WKRG News 5.

STB says the bottles appear to come from the Caribbean or Central America. The bottles are being caught in the sargassum and washing ashore. The diamond shape holes are the turtle bites, parrotfish can also make similar markings.

According to the Sea Turtle Conservancy, more than 1 million marine animals (including mammals, fish, sharks, turtles, and birds) are killed each year due to plastic debris in the ocean. Currently, it is estimated that there are 100 million tons of plastic in oceans around the world.

The Solution: Education is important to solving marine pollution. The public can get involved in this issue by:

  • Reduce, Reuse and Recycle plastics;
  • Use reusable cloth bags instead of plastic bags when shopping;
  • Support local, regional and nationwide bans on plastic grocery bags;
  • Don’t litter. Instead, volunteer at local beach clean-up events;
  • Make sure to properly secure your garbage to prevent any fly-away plastics;
  • Don’t release balloons into the air. They travel far and end up in our oceans being consumed by sea turtles that mistake them for food.

“All sea turtle footage obtained with the approval of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service under
conditions not harmful to this or other turtles.”

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