This study compared plastic ingestion between pelagic and benthic fish populations from two UK watersheds: the Thames Estuary and the Firth of Clyde. The alimentary canals of 876 individuals were examined. Of twenty-one estuarine species investigated, fourteen ingested plastics, including predator (fish) and prey (shrimp) species. Overall, 32% of organisms ingested plastic, mostly fibres (88% of total plastics). More flatfish (38%) ingested plastics than other benthic species (17%). In the Thames, more plastic was ingested by pelagic species (average number of plastic pieces ingested: 3.2) and flatfish (average number of plastic pieces ingested: 2.9) than by shrimp (average number of plastic pieces ingested: 1). More fish from the Clyde ingested plastic than similar Thames species (39% compared to 28% respectively); however, the average amount of plastic ingested did not differ between the sites.
- Thames Estuary
- Firth of Clyde fish populations
- FTIR spectroscopy
McGoran, A. R., Cowie, P. R., Clark, P. F., McEvoy, J. P., & Morritt, D. (2018). Ingestion of plastic by fish: a comparison of Thames Estuary and Firth of Clyde populations. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 137, 12-23. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2018.09.054