Researchers find whales eat 10 million pieces of microplastic daily

Researchers from Stanford University published a new study on blue, fin, and humpback whales that found that some species of whales are ingesting as many as 10 million pieces of microplastic each day. That massive number — much more than previously thought — comes solely from the food they eat, not the water they gulp in.

Microplastics are small pieces of plastic that can come from shedding fibers of synthetic textiles, the breakdown of larger plastic pieces, or the escape of nurdles from cargo ships

These whales aren’t ingesting microplastics from the water, but rather through the krill they eat. As the study’s co-author Matthew Savoca said in a press release, “the krill eat the plastic, and then the whale eats the krill.”

thecooldown Researchers find whales eat 10 million pieces of microplastic daily