Rescuing Seals from Plastic Pollution

Plastic and marine life don’t mix. It’s great to see organizations and individuals like these working to mitigate some of the effects of plastic on marine life. This is from the Ocean Conservation Nambia YouTube channel. Great work by these guys!

From their video description…

This seal had a bright blue spool stuck around his neck. He likely played with it under water, and it slipped onto his neck, and he could not get it off by himself. As he grew, the spool became tighter and tighter, stopping him from hunting and even breathing properly. The rescuers could see immediately that the spool was not movable anymore, they had to take the bolt cutter out. A first attempt to saw it off was unsuccessful, because the animal became too stressed out. Naude used the bolt cutter to slowly chip away the hard plastic and eventually the team could bend it open and Wally managed to break it in half, which was needed to remove it from the seal’s neck. Thanks to Wally’s awesome new release system, the rescuers could safely open up the front of the rescue net and watch the seal run off into the safety of the ocean, hopefully to have a big meal. The first day of his new life.

The ocean is a large ecosystem and important habitat supporting countless creatures from plankton to whales. Unfortunately, the ocean also contains an abundance of man-made pollution that can harm the animals who live in it. For every animal that’s rescued imagine how many more are not so lucky. The first thing we need to do as humans is recognize where our garbage ends up after it’s thrown away: much of it in the ocean 🙁

A study done by Ocean Conservancy showed that every year there are over 8 million metric tons of trash dumped into the world’s oceans from coastal communities around the globe. Whether intentional or not, plastic pollution has a huge impact on marine habitats and life.

Each of us can reduce our pollution footprint; minimizing the use of single use plastic is an obvious step. Plastic grocery bags, six pack holders, and single-serving plastic beverage bottles come to mind. Cutting back or eliminating these things from our shopping carts does make a difference.

Check out more seal rescue videos on the Ocean Conservation Nambia YouTube channel, and see the links in the video description to help support these rescues!