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Chemicals from plastic found in eggs of the fulmar

Amsterdam, February 20, 2019 – Fulmars skim the surface of the sea in search of food. They do not only ingest food, but also floating plastic. The stomach contents of the Northern Fulmar, according to long-term Dutch research, consists of twenty-five pieces of plastic on average. Researchers associated with the Canadian Wildlife Service have now discovered chemicals from plastic in the eggs of the fulmar for the first time. The researchers presume that the substances originate from the swallowed plastic and end up in egg yolks through the bloodstream.

Eggs from the Northern Fulmars that nestle on the island of Prince Leopold in the polar region north of Canada were investigated. One egg contained hormone disrupting substances from plasticizers. Other eggs contained chemicals that are added to plastic to prevent disintegration and color loss.

The shocking research results were presented in Washington DC during a meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and have not yet been published. Only a limited amount of eggs were examined. The research group now wants to investigate more eggs, also from birds that breed in areas where they come into contact with plastic much more than in the polar region.

Foto: kilda.org.uk

Also read the news in The Guardian.