Sperm whale found dead with “nearly 6kg” of plastic in its stomach

27 November 2018

Over 100 drinking cups and 25 plastic bags were found inside the dead whale in Indonesian seas

A dead sperm whale has been found washed up on the shores of an Indonesian national park with nearly 6kg of plastic waste in its stomach, according to national park officials.

The carcass of the whale was discovered in the sea just off Kapota Island in the Wakatobi National Park on Monday, and upon inspection it was found that 115 drinking cups, 4 plastic bottles, 25 plastic bags and two flip-flops were found in the animal’s stomach.

Although it is not known if the plastic consumption was ultimately the whale’s cause of death, this isn’t the first time that a marine animal has been found dead after swallowing plastic. It’s claimed by National Geographic that over 300 marine animals have died after eating plastic in Thai waters, and in April, a sperm whale was found dead as close to home as southern Spain with nearly 30kg of plastic in its stomach.

Whales feed on squid, cuttlefish and even small fish, yet often mistake plastic bags for food. These animals can die of malnutrition after eating large quantities of plastic, mistakenly feeling full. 

What can I do to alleviate plastic waste?

A report earlier this year warned that the amount of plastic in the ocean couple triple in the next ten years, and the UN estimates that 10m tonnes of plastic waste ends up in the ocean every year. There are a number of things we as a nation can do to ensure that plastic waste is kept to a minimum.

At W&S Recycling, we individually sort, grade and bale any plastics received for onward transportation to re-processors.

We use the highest quality plastic recycling equipment to ensure that the recycling process remains easy and efficient. On top of our depots in Dorset and Oxfordshire that accept deliveries of polystyrene, we also have experts that offer a recycling collection service for plastic film and bottles locally.

We pride ourselves on our outstanding customer service, with tailor made plastic recycling services to suit the requirement of any client.


We are an experienced team of recycling specialists based in Dorset and Oxfordshire. We have expertise in all areas of recycling and waste disposal ranging from cardboard recycling and End of Life Vehicle Collection, to trade waste disposal and metal recycling. For more information about our recycling services, or for further advice on how you can make a difference at home, contact our team on 01202 675564.

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Locate your nearest household waste centre and scrap yard using the list below. Unsure of where your waste needs to go? Contact our team and we'll be more than happy to help. For your local council charges visit the Oxford Council and Dorset For You websites.

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