At the end of yesterday's report we were sailing south back to the safety of Port Davey because the weather was about to get a lot worse and the boat captains wanted to make sure that we were anchored in a sheltered bay safe from the coming storm.
Remember, one of the questions I wanted to investigate on this trip was, “How is marine litter changing the land and waters of Southwest Tasmania?”
Well, it’s time to answer that question, with a RUBBISH COLLECTION UPDATE!
So far we have picked up 55248 pieces of rubbish!
Most of which was small pieces smaller than a box of matches.
Here are some fun facts about the rubbish we collected:
- Most of the small pieces of plastic are blue or white.
- There was a huge amount of little pieces of rope.
- Some of the plastic drink bottles and food containers were from Indonesia.
- If you find a rubber glove on a beach, the second one is usually somewhere nearby.
The rubbish is not just a problem because it is ugly and messy, it also affects the living things.
- It clogs up animals stomachs and can make them sick or die.
- When a carnivore eats another animal with plastic in it’s body the plastic stays in the carnivore’s body.
There are many other reasons why marine litter is a big problem in the natural environment. But Theo and I want to challenge you to find out for us. You might start by watching some of these videos. I’ll be interested to see what you find out, maybe you can also find out what other places there are in the world that have a marine litter problem?
After we counted the litter we tied all the boats together side by side and had a big dinner together, after which some of us pulled out musical instruments and we had a wilderness concert! Theo had bought his mandolin (like a small guitar) and played in the band – pretty cool thing to do for a 13 year old.
This morning it was very rainy and windy, and we couldn't clean any beaches, so we sailed inland into Bathurst Harbour, an amazing place that is unlike anywhere else in the world because of the layers in the water. We anchored near Clydes Corner and climbed some mountains to see spectacular views. That night Masaaki (who is a famous chef) made a massive pile of yummy fried rice with stripey trumpeter fish.
We have two more days of beach cleaning and then the voyage back to Hobart. If you are reading this on Friday then make sure you log on again next week because there will be more reports coming in over the weekend.
I hope you are all starting to think about how you can start organising an investigation and cleanup of a local beach or creek near you. We have to beat the problem of plastic pollution in our natural environments!
Pat and Theo