A young dead whale that washed up in the Philippines died of “dehydration and starvation” after consuming 40 kilograms of plastic bags, researchers have said.
The juvenile male Cuvier’s beaked whale showed signs of being emaciated and dehydration and had been vomiting blood before it died.
The carcass of the whale was found in Mabini, Compostela Valley.
A necropsy was performed, which found that it had died from ingesting plastic.
The whale was unable to obtain sufficient water from its food and died of dehydration and starvation. There were so many plastic bags in the animal’s stomach that some had begun to calcify.
Cetaceans, which is a family of aquatic mammals that includes whales and dolphins, don’t drink water from the ocean. They instead obtain water from the food they eat. The young whale was no longer able to consume large amounts of food due to the ingested plastic and died.
Ocean plastic pollution is responsible for the death of hundreds of thousands of dolphins, whales, seals, and turtles every year.