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A comparison of plastic and plankton in the North Pacific central gyre
Moore, C.J.; Moore, S.L.; Leecaster, M.K.; Weisberg, S.B. (2001). A comparison of plastic and plankton in the North Pacific central gyre. Mar. Pollut. Bull. 42(12): 1297-1300
In: Marine Pollution Bulletin. Macmillan: London. ISSN 0025-326X, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

Keywords
    Gyres; Plastic debris; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Moore, C.J.
  • Moore, S.L.
  • Leecaster, M.K.
  • Weisberg, S.B.

Abstract
    The potential for ingestion of plastic particles by open ocean filter feeders was assessed by measuring the relative abundance and mass of neustonic plastic and zooplankton in surface waters under the central atmospheric high-pressure cells of the North Pacific Ocean. Neuston samples were collected at I I random sites, using a manta trawl lined with 333 u mesh. The abundance and mass of neustonic plastic was the largest recorded anywhere in the Pacific Ocean at 334271 pieces km² and 5114 g km², respectively. Plankton abundance was approximately five times higher than that of plastic, but the mass of plastic was approximately six times that of plankton. The most frequently sampled types of identifiable plastic were thin films, polypropylene/monofilament line and unidentified plastic, most of which were miscellaneous fragments. Cumulatively, these three types accounted for 98% of the total number of plastic pieces.

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