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Marine debris ingestion by albatrosses in the southwest Atlantic Ocean

Jiménez, Sebastián; Domingo, Andrés; Brazeiro, Alejandro; Defeo, Omar; Phillips, Richard A.. 2015 Marine debris ingestion by albatrosses in the southwest Atlantic Ocean. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 96 (1-2). 149-154. 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2015.05.034

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This article has been accepted for publication and will appear in a revised form in the Marine Pollution Bulletin, published by Elsevier. Copyright Elsevier.
Jimenez et al 2015 - Marine debris ingestion by albatrosses.pdf - Accepted Version

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Abstract/Summary

Plastics and other marine debris affect wildlife through entanglement and by ingestion. We assessed the ingestion of marine debris by seven albatross species in the southwest Atlantic by analyzing stomach contents of birds killed in fisheries. Of the 128 specimens examined, including four Diomedea species (n = 78) and three Thalassarche species (n = 50), 21 (16.4%) contained 1–4 debris items, mainly in the ventriculus. The most common type was plastic fragments. Debris was most frequent in Diomedea species (25.6%) and, particularly, Diomedea sanfordi (38.9%) and very rare in Thalassarche species (2.0%), presumably reflecting differences in foraging behavior or distribution. Frequency of occurrence was significantly higher in male than female Diomedea albatrosses (39.3% vs. 18.0%). Although levels of accumulated debris were relatively low overall, and unlikely to result in gut blockage, associated toxins might nevertheless represent a health risk for Diomedea albatrosses, compounding the negative impact of other human activities on these threatened species.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2015.05.034
Programmes: BAS Programmes > BAS Programmes 2015 > Ecosystems
ISSN: 0025326X
Additional Keywords: seabirds, Procellariiformes, pollution, plastics
Date made live: 19 May 2015 08:23 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/510822

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