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Game Birds Ingesting Plastic and Garbage Metal: Study

Cara J

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Waterfowl commonly hunted as game birds in eastern Canada are ingesting significant amounts of plastic and garbage metal, according to a new study. While researchers have been documenting the ingesting of plastic by seabirds for some time, biologists were surprised to find accumulations of garbage in birds that spend most of their time on land. “The alarming thing was that we didn’t even expect these birds to be picking it up,” said Mark Mallory, a Canada Research Chair and associate biology professor at Acadia University in Nova Scotia and the senior author of a study published in Marine Pollution Bulletin. “It’s pretty disturbing that the species we hunt are picking up this garbage and digesting it.” Mallory and a research team examined three waterfowl species wintering in Atlantic Canada including mallards (Anas platyrhynchos), American black ducks (Anas rubripes) and common eiders (Somateria mollissima). They found that the mallards ingested the largest amount of garbage, with six out of 13 individuals (46 percent) having plastic in their gizzards. Six out of 87 (7 percent) dissected black ducks had plastic and one of 48 eiders (2 percent). The reason for the higher levels of plastic in black ducks and mallards probably has [...]


Read more: http://wildlife.org/game-birds-ingesting-plastic-and-garbage-metal-study/

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