Microplastic debris in sandhoppers

Year: 2013

Authors: Ugolini A., Ungherese G., Ciofini M., Lapucci A., Camaiti M.

Autors Affiliation: Dipartimento di Biologia, Università di Firenze, Via Romana 17, 50125 Firenze, Italy; Istituto nazionale di Ottica – CNR, Largo E. Fermi 6, 50125 Firenze, Italy; ICVBC – CNR, Via Madonna del Piano 10, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Firenze, Italy

Abstract: Adults of the sandhopper Talitrus saltator were fed with dry fish food mixed with polyethylene microspheres (diameter 10-45 mu m). Observations of homogenized guts revealed the presence of microspheres independently of their dimensions. The gut resident time (GRT) was recorded and most of the microspheres are expelled in 24 h. Microspheres are totally expelled in one week. Preliminary investigations did not show any consequence of microsphere ingestion on the survival capacity in the laboratory. FT-IR analyses carried out on faeces of freshly collected individuals revealed the presence of polyethylene and polypropylene. This confirms that microplastic debris could be swallowed by T. saltator in natural conditions. (c) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Volume: 129      Pages from: 19  to: 22

More Information: We wish to thank the Migliarino, S. Rossore, Massaciuccoli Regional Park for authorization of the samplings. Many thanks are due to Dr. Linda Bolognesi for her help during the experiments. The research was carried out with the financial support of the Cassa di Risparmi di Livorno (grant assigned to A. Ugolini).
KeyWords: Microplastic; Sandhoppers; Sandy beaches; Supralittoral zone; Talitrus saltator; Adult; Crustacean; Feces; feeding behavior; Fish; Food; Plastic; Survival
DOI: 10.1016/j.ecss.2013.05.026

Citations: 93
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