SEOUL, Jul. 24 (Korea Bizwire) — An autopsy of a dead turtle captured last month in the Yellow Sea revealed a startling amount of plastic waste inside the animal’s stomach, pointing to the problem of marine pollution in South Korean waters.
The loggerhead sea turtle captured in a net last month off the coast of an island in South Chungcheong Province was found to have eaten a worrying amount of plastic waste after the Marine Biodiversity Institute of Korea (MABIK) conducted an autopsy on the sea animal.
Though the cause of death was deemed to be drowning, as the turtle had become entangled in a net that prevented it from breathing, sea turtles often confuse plastic waste with jellyfish due to the similarities in appearance.
Officials at the MABIK say, however, that the autopsy findings paint a much bigger picture of marine environmental problems in Korean seas.
Kim Yeong-jun, an official at the National Institute of Ecology, said, “Though the autopsy results show the sea turtle’s overall health and state of nutrition was good, a significant quantity of plastic waste from China and Korea was discovered in its digestive organs.
“It’s a warning sign of the marine pollution in the Yellow Sea and an example that raises awareness of protecting marine life.”
Hyunsu Yim (firstname.lastname@example.org)