Plastic pollution is one of the major threats to marine ecosystems. Although great efforts have been done to track and measure plastic pollution in Northern Hemisphere ecosystems, little is known about the anthropogenic impact on Southern Hemisphere oceans. Guafo Island is a pristine, remote and highly productive ecosystem located in Northern Pacific Patagonia, were preliminary studies have shown that there is extensive plastic pollution in the reproductive grounds of marine birds, sea lions and fur seals.
That’s why, this project focus in identify the real human (“plastic”) impact in the island, related with the fur seal population health, and intend to classify and track the origin and effects of macro/micro plastic pollution in the Guafo Island marine ecosystem, using fur seals (top predator) as a bio-indicator.
This project is partially funded by The Rufford Small Grant Fundation (Project title: “The Sources and Impact of Plastic Pollution on South American Fur Seals (Arctocephalus australis) In Chilean Patagonia” ID: 18815-1) http://www.rufford.org/projects/diego_pérez
Know more about plastic pollution at Guafo Island and what we are doing to understand this problem and its potential impact in this ecosystem