Why care about marine debris?
Today students took time to reflect on the impact that marine debris can have on aquatic organisms. Specifically, students looked at the Albatross, a sea bird that surfs the oceans waves looking for squid and fish to eat. However, those Albatross will often eat plastic by mistake. By dissecting boluses, the non-digestible pieces that the birds regurgitate, scientists can get an idea of how much plastic these animals are eating, and the composition of those materials.
To sample the composition, our students at Helms made mini-transects, spinning their pencil on top of the paper, then recording whatever the pencil touched.