Litter Found in Stomachs of Dolphinfish

The manager of a fish-processing plant uploaded pictures to social media yesterday, after finding a a plastic ring, plastic straw, and other foreign objects in a fishes’ stomach. He hopes that the pictures will draw attention to the problem of environmental pollution.

Chen Jun-jie has been working in the seafood industry for more than 20 years, and said that recently there have been more cases of discarded objects found in fish stomachs. Objects found recently include plastic straws, rubber bands, plastic bags, and BB pellets.

Mr Chen runs the Yilan Fine Fisheries company, based in Nanfang-ao near the port of Su-ao in Yilan County. The company processes 1-2 tons of fish daily, ranging from 500-1000 fish. Recently they have been processing dolphinfish, also known as “dorado” or “mahi-mahi”.

The dolphin-fish is a surface-dwelling fish known to be attracted to surface debris. This makes the species particularly vulnerable to ingestion of plastic debris.

Fishers targeting the fish look for patches of flotsam and jetsam, including plastic, where the fish are likely to be found.

A rubber band, plastic straw, pieces of string or wire, and other objects shown in the belly of a fish gutted in Ilan County Taiwan November 2016
Discarded plastic and other litter found in the stomach of a Dolphinfish in Ilan County November 2016. Photo: Chen Jun-jie

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