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Jul 6, 2016 @ 5:38

CBC news: ocean plastic lowers fish reproduction rates

Scientists have been raising the alarm about the huge amounts of plastic that have been entering marine systems, and ending up in the most remote ocean areas. In a new study Dr. Oona Lönnstedt, a marine biologist in the Department of Ecology and Genetics at Uppsala University in Sweden, investigated what impact one common plastic, polystyrene, has on juvenile fish.

She found that larval perch were affected by plastic, both physically and chemically, in several ways. Egg hatching was less successful in the presence of plastic, and larval fish seemed attracted to it, consuming it in preference over their normal food of zooplankton.

Plastic also seemed to affect fish behaviour, making them less active, and causing them to ignore the chemical cues that trigger their predator avoidance behaviours.

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