Darrell Blatchley received a call from the Philippines Bureau of Fisheries and Acquatic Resources (BFAR) early Friday morning to report that they had a young Cuvier's beaked whale that was weak and vomiting blood.
"If we keep going this way, it will be more uncommon to see an animal die of natural causes than it is to see an animal die of plastic", he said.
"I was not prepared for the amount of plastic", he told the news outlet. A dead sperm whale washed up in Indonesia last November with 100 plastic cups, four plastic bottles, 25 plastic bags and even a couple of flip-flops inside its stomach. "Roughly 40 kilos of rice sacks, grocery bags, banana plantation bags and general plastic bags". Sixteen rice sacks total.
"Credit: Darrell Blatchley/ D'Bone Collector Museum Inc". Blatchley said that the team will continue to sift through the rubbish pulled from the whale's insides to get a full list of the items that clogged up its stomach.
He noted that there were so many plastic bags in the animal's stomach that some had begun to calcify.
Just this year, 3 whales and dolphins were found dead along the Davao gulf after ingesting plastic garbage.
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Shocking images show the amount of plastic the whale had swallowed.
Darrel said: "This whale had the most plastic we have ever seen in a whale".
A 2017 study predicted a spike in plastic-related waste over the next decade, further highlighting potential future harm to marine life. "It's disgusting. Action must be taken by the government against those who continue to treat the waterways and ocean as dumpsters".
"Hundreds of thousands of whales, dolphins, seals and turtles are killed by ocean plastic pollution every year, including single-use plastics and abandoned plastic gear from the fishing industry", he told CNN.
"Upon reaching the stomach during the autopsy I knew this whale had died due to plastic ingestion".
Five Asian nations - China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Thailand - accounted for up to 60% of the plastic waste that ends up in oceans, according to a 2015 report by environmental campaigner Ocean Conservancy and the McKinsey Center for Business and Environment.