Table_1_Eating Near the Dump: Identification of Nearby Plastic Hotspot as a Proxy for Potential Microplastic Contamination in the Norwegian Lobster (N.XLSX (12.29 kB)
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Table_1_Eating Near the Dump: Identification of Nearby Plastic Hotspot as a Proxy for Potential Microplastic Contamination in the Norwegian Lobster (Nephrops norvegicus).XLSX

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posted on 01.07.2021, 16:50 by Simone Franceschini, Alessandro Cau, Lorenzo D’Andrea, Maria Cristina Follesa, Tommaso Russo

Plastic waste dumped in the marine environment has severe ecological, social and economic impacts. In recent years, a series of scientific studies documented the contamination by macroplastic and its impact on marine organisms through the accidental ingestion of microplastics, which also originate from the degradation of macroplastic. However, the relationship between the spatial distribution of marine litter and the ingestion of plastics by organisms have never been related. In this work, we aimed to investigate, through a modeling approach, the relations between potential sources of microplastic particles (i.e., seafloor macroplastic accumulation hotspots detected by means of trawl surveys), and the ingestion by the benthic crustacean Norwegian lobster (Nephrops norvegicus). According to the literature, N. norvegicus is characterized by a sedentary behavior and therefore it has been highlighted as a proficient sentinel species for local microplastic contamination. Despite no significant relation has been found between microplastic ingestion and the local presence of seafloor macroplastic, it seems that proximity to hotspots of macroplastic accumulation is significantly related to microplastics ingestion. These results highlight important considerations on the fate of plastic in the marine environments with significant impacts on biota and the quality of the product caught at sea.

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