Marine Debris Update


Great work this March with marine debris photos! We set a new monthly record – 1018 photos taken in March. Well done! The collection continues to build, with lots of new and interesting debris found from all states. As we’ve mentioned, these photos are being categorized in a database based on attributes (color, size, material, etc). Attributes can then be directly related to marine debris’ harm to wildlife. For example, soft translucent plastic is known to be harmful to sea turtles because they ingest it more frequently than any other kind of plastic. A database of debris and linked attributes could help to direct clean-up efforts to the most harmful areas, create maps showing harm to wildlife, and understand current and weather patterns bringing debris ashore.

Marine debris photos: A stuffed flamingo toy found in the Puget Sound (top left), caulk found in California (top right), Coast Gaurd-related material that washed ashore in Puget Sound (bottom left), and an algae covered duckie from Oregon – match of the UW Huskies bowl (bottom right).

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