Corals reject shrimp eggs, choose to eat micro-plastic seeds

A single coral can absorb up to 100 micro-plastic fibers and is considered a favorite dish that is poisoning them.

A single coral can absorb up to 100 micro-plastic fibers and is considered a favorite dish that is poisoning them.

Scientists have discovered that some wild corals are eating small pieces of plastic waste . Micro-plastic particles can be harmful to corals but research results show they prefer micro-plastic particles rather than natural food, new research has just been published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society for Biological Sciences ( Proceedings of the Royal Society B).

Picture 1 of Corals reject shrimp eggs, choose to eat micro-plastic seeds
"Like" coral individuals eat micro-plastic seeds rather than shrimp eggs.(Photo: National Geographic).

Biological researcher Randi Rotjan of Boston had a new study on marine ecosystems, and she and her colleagues began collecting small corals called poculata living on the Atlantic coast, from Massachusetts to the bay. Mexico. This area is close to an urban area that is expected to be polluted by water from plastic.

The group found more than 100 micro-plastic fibers in an individual coral. After that, they conducted experiments to raise each individual coral with 2 types of food, which are blue fluorescent plastic micro-beads and shrimp eggs soaked in salt water. Blue fluorescent plastic microbes are common in soap, cosmetics, even in medicines. The result surprised the research team when coral ate many microparticles twice as salted shrimp eggs.

In another experiment, the researchers gave the individual the coral that ate micro-plastic particles coated with a thin layer of bacteria, which is the intestinal bacteria, E.coli, which is dyed in fluorescent green for ease. observe. More than 48 hours after swallowing micro-plastic, the coral individual spit them out but the luminescent E. coli bacteria still exist inside the coral digestive tract. All coral individuals ate micro-plastic microbes with E. coli and died within two weeks.

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