We just returned from a cruise on the Paradise, and I saw something I'd like to share -I suspect many people just don't realize little things like this could have such a huge impact on life in the sea, so I 'd like to draw some quick attention to it. I'm sure no one here will mind a kind reminder.
One day on deck, there was a family at a table near us. It was quite windy, so one of the teenagers had a plastic shopping bag tucked under her leg to keep it from blowing away. I'm guessing she had been using it to hold her camera & suntan lotion, which were visible on the table. OK, all fine there, right?
Except then she got up, forgetting about the bag, and it blew off the chair, then overboard into the water. She looked irritated that she had lost her bag, but quickly got over it. The bag was instantly forgotten. What happened to it? That sort of thing happens all the time, who cares, right? Let me share what likely happened after that bag disappeared.
Hundreds of thousands of sea turtles, whales and other marine mammals die every year from eating discarded plastic bags mistaken for food. Turtles think the bags are jellyfish, their primary food source. Once swallowed, plastic bags choke animals or block their intestines, leading to an agonizing death.
I know we all do things every day without thinking of their ramifications, but
that single, forgettable event may have resulted in a death. Something that occurred in less than a minute haunted me for the rest of the cruise.
So please, fellow cruisers, keep in mind that the things you do (or don't do) can affect the very ocean you're there to enjoy. Please be careful with your belongings - you want them a lot more than the fishes do!
Thanks for your attention, all.
Post Edited (04-06-04 11:53)