Title

Plastic Ingestion by Pelagic and Benthic Crustaceans at the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge

Start

2-24-2022 4:15 PM

End

2-24-2022 4:30 PM

Type of Presentation

Oral Presentation

Abstract

Plastic debris is a widespread pollutant found in all marine environments and it is known to have detrimental effects both on the environment and on a variety of organisms. Research over the past decade has documented plastic ingestion in pelagic fish species, however there are few studies examining plastic ingestion in deep-sea crustaceans. We quantified plastic ingestion in deep-sea decapod crustacean species with respect to habitat (pelagic vs. benthic), geography, and hydrography of the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone (CGFZ) of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR). Pelagic specimens were captured at four discrete depths from 0-2900 m depth; benthic samples were obtained along the seafloor at depths between 1900m-3500m, from stations north and south of the CGFZ. Plastics were extracted from the digestive tract and gills and categorized by size as mesoplastics, microplastics, or mini-microplastics, and by type as fiber, film, fragment, and pellet. Plastic ingestion in benthic species was similar in samples collected both north and south of the CGFZ. While all types of plastics were present, the highest percentage was in the fiber category. Plastics ingestion in pelagic species was higher in samples collected north of the CGFZ vs. the southern samples. The only plastic-type present in the pelagic species from either region was fibers. This study is the first to compare plastic contamination in deep-sea benthic vs. pelagic species collected from the same area at the same time.

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Feb 24th, 4:15 PM Feb 24th, 4:30 PM

Plastic Ingestion by Pelagic and Benthic Crustaceans at the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge

Plastic debris is a widespread pollutant found in all marine environments and it is known to have detrimental effects both on the environment and on a variety of organisms. Research over the past decade has documented plastic ingestion in pelagic fish species, however there are few studies examining plastic ingestion in deep-sea crustaceans. We quantified plastic ingestion in deep-sea decapod crustacean species with respect to habitat (pelagic vs. benthic), geography, and hydrography of the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone (CGFZ) of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR). Pelagic specimens were captured at four discrete depths from 0-2900 m depth; benthic samples were obtained along the seafloor at depths between 1900m-3500m, from stations north and south of the CGFZ. Plastics were extracted from the digestive tract and gills and categorized by size as mesoplastics, microplastics, or mini-microplastics, and by type as fiber, film, fragment, and pellet. Plastic ingestion in benthic species was similar in samples collected both north and south of the CGFZ. While all types of plastics were present, the highest percentage was in the fiber category. Plastics ingestion in pelagic species was higher in samples collected north of the CGFZ vs. the southern samples. The only plastic-type present in the pelagic species from either region was fibers. This study is the first to compare plastic contamination in deep-sea benthic vs. pelagic species collected from the same area at the same time.