Young Sperm Whale Found Dead On Beach With 15 Pounds Of Plastic In Its Stomach

Young Sperm Whale Found Dead On Beach With 15 Pounds Of Plastic In Its Stomach

Sperm whales have a life span of 70-80 years this one was just seven years old and "her teeth haven't come out yet."

After the dead carcass of a sperm whale filled with plastic in its stomach washed ashore environmental experts have been resounding a bell of alarm. Greenpeace Italia estimated the age of the dead creature to be just 7 years old (which is relatively quite young for these species) as reported by CNN. The corpse was found at the beach at Cefalu, a city in the region of Sicily, Italy on Friday.

Source: Facebook

The heartwrenching photographs were posted on Greenpeace Italia's Facebook group page.  Besides the picture of this dead mammal, they also wrote a few lines warning humans of their life-threatening activities. In the high sea, away from control and laws of individual states, there is an immense blue expanse increasingly threatened by man's activities. From the oceans depends on the life of the planet, ours too Proteggiamoli, read the caption.

Source: Facebook

Giorgia Monti a member of Greenpeace Italia said in a statement, "As you can see from the images we're sharing, a lot of plastic was found in its stomach." As the cause of death wasn't revealed on the same day they weren't sure if the whale had indeed died because of the plastic content found in its body, but the presence of it could not be ignored. "A probe of the sperm whale's death has just started and we don't know yet if the animal died because of this, but we certainly can't pretend that nothing is happening," said Monti.


"Five sperm whales beached on Italian coasts in the last five months," revealed Monti. On Sunday a necropsy was performed on the whale to ascertain the reason behind its death. In the due course of their procedure, Carmelo Isgro a worker at the University of Messina's natural history museum was also involved in this procedure. In the due course of their findings, graphic several images and videos were shot. They were also uploaded on Facebook.


In one of these videos, experts cut open the stomach of the whale and to their dismay, they found a huge amount of plastic sitting there. " These are the squid the whale ate -- and this is all plastic," Isgro says in the video. In another shot, he is seen transferring the plastic content from the whale's stomach to a recycling bin and saying, "It's impressive. Unbelievable." In an interview with CNNIsgro said how they were able to recover "several kilograms worth of plastic" from the mammal's stomach.


Isgro comes to the conclusion that the presence of plastic in the whale's stomach " probably created a block that didn't let the food in." He also added, "That's very likely to be the cause of death. We have not found signs that could indicate another possible reason." He also told the news outlet that the whale was very young as "her teeth haven't come out yet." Revealing his shock he said, "I'm still shocked because her belly was completely full, swollen with plastic."


This particular species of sperm whales live up to 70-80 years, he confessed, and to witness it die this young was very disturbing. "The sea is sending us a cry of alarm, a desperate SOS. We must intervene immediately to save the wonderful creatures that inhabit it." Monti continued. This comes right after a 26 feet long pregnant sperm whale was found dead in April this year. The carcass had washed up in a popular tourist spot beach in Sardinia, Italy. The country's environment minister and a marine life non-profit organization stated that 22 kilograms (49 pounds) of plastic was retrieved from her stomach along with a dead fetus.


CNN spoke to the president of SeaMe group, Luca Bittau, who listed the contents in the mammal's stomach as "garbage bags ... fishing nets, lines, tubes, the bag of a washing machine liquid still identifiable, with brand and barcode ... and other objects no longer identifiable." He added, "She was pregnant and had almost certainly aborted before (she) beached." Sadly he expressed, "The fetus was in an advanced state of composition." In the light of the recent events, Greenpeace and the Blue Dream Project will be launching a project at the end of this month, reported CNN. They will be examining (for three weeks) the level of plastic pollution in the sea and their primary focus will be on the Tyrrhenian Sea. 


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