Plastic waste reaches 80% of the nests of marine birds on a Scottish island

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Surveys conducted on Lady Isle Island in Firth of Clyde revealed the presence of plastic debris in more than 80% of the nests of seabird species on an uninhabited island off the coast of Scotland, containing 35.6% of herring nests and 53.5% of gulls nests in black On plastic.

“They end up in the nests of seabirds, not because seabirds actively pick them up in built-up areas and transport them to their nests, but because they are brought in negatively by marine currents,” said Dr. Rudi Nager, marine ecologist at the University of Glasgow.

As for the survey, which was conducted in May 2018, researchers examined 1,597 nests on the island off the coast of Ayrshire. The plastic in the nests ranged from filament residues, solid parts and synthetics, and ranged in color from transparent to pink.

The research, led by the University of Glasgow, indicates that plastics are pushed ashore from Ayrshire, and once they reach Lady Isle, they are incorporated into bird nests, where plastics can affect the quality of nest structures, which can harm eggs and chicken.

The large difference between the plastic proportions in the nests of some birds may be due to different nest building behaviors, as seabirds interact with plastic by swallowing them occasionally.

The researchers found that the nests in the north of the island, which are closer to the outer tide of the mainland, were more plastic, indicating that they came from the mainland and were pushed ashore.



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