Whale Washed Ashore in the Netherlands. Cause of Death: Intestinal Blockage Due to Plastic Trash.

Via elephant journal
on Nov 6, 2013
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Blue Dolphin Cruise --Humpback Whale Flipper

Stranded sperm whale in the Netherlands found with over 37 lbs of plastic trash in its stomach. Cause of death was intestinal blockage. (source)

Sad alert:

People? Let’s use less plastic (paper or cloth bulk bags, for one), and companies, please use alternatives.  

This is so sad, and unnecessary.

Here’s a few amazing randoms re: sperm whales.

After reading the below, come back here: this might cheer you up: “Father and daughter in a kayak have an amazingly close whale encounter.” (video)

And: Researchers have found Sperm whales that adopted a deformed Dolphin. It may be that both species simply liked the social contact. (news.sciencemag.org)

Or: How can sperm whales survive at depths 12x that of modern nuclear submarines? (self.askscience)

But: this happens frequently. Spanish sperm whale death linked to UK supermarket supplier’s plastic: the whale had swallowed 17kg of plastic waste dumped into the sea by farmers tending greenhouses supplying produce for British supermarkets (guardian.co.uk)


Remember: recycling plastic is just about useless. It’s just moving it around, and consumes a great deal of energy, and it degrades, but never goes away.

Use less plastic.


“There is no excuse for plastic bags, for example. They are shipped overseas because breaking them down pollutes the air and I guess we feel like pollution in China doesnt effect us (it does)…”

“At least they know the cause of death. It’s very difficult to get necropsy reports from Florida on stranded whales. Still waiting for last week’s results for a sperm whale stranding in Tampa last week. May be a while…if ever…” “researchers were given a gag order not to release necropsy reports during the BP spill investigation as the death tally affected the fines…” “Or seismic/sonic testing…multiple active testing sites in the gulf…also conducted by oil and natural gas companies looking for places to drill…”


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6 Responses to “Whale Washed Ashore in the Netherlands. Cause of Death: Intestinal Blockage Due to Plastic Trash.”

  1. Amanda says:

    Exactly why we need to continue striving for REFUSING rather REDUCING waste. Refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle (or compost).

  2. Erica says:

    yes!!! Amazing post!

  3. Linda V. Lewis says:

    Thanks for another vivid wake up! Cause and effect are inescapable–like Plastic and death!

  4. Hermes says:

    I haven't accepted a plastic bag in 20 years, since I own a shopping bag. In the bins I use bio-degradable ones.
    It's so easy to save a whale or two.

  5. eva says:

    I wonder if ships and boats do not trow they're waist just into the sea – to get rid of they're trash. I will visit soon the Iland Koh Samet in Thailand – many tourist visit this place – so a lot of plastic trash is left behind. Where does all this trash goes from this resorts? I will have an eye on it. Also I have seen when I stayed 2 years ago there, that school children taking the boat to the island never hesitate to trow all plastic bags and cups into the sea. Edicuation is missing there!

  6. Guest says:

    This article has a number of issues with it.

    One, it points the finger at businesses and entities without any proof. Did anyone see the plastic leave the farm and end up in the ocean? Do they know that 'this' plastic came from the farms?

    Two, it doesn't even look for possible other sources that the plastic could have come from. Whales are generally migratory, so who knows how long that plastic has been in it's stomach as the article doesn't say.

    Three, it really is a dishonest piece of journalism. It writes a story with no facts to back up it's claims.