“According to the analyses the trapped microplastics in the prairies of Posidonia oceanica are mainly filaments, fibres and fragments of polymers that are denser than sea water, such as polyethylene terephthalate (PET),” said marine biologist Anna Sànchez-Vidal, leader of the study.
“The plastics we find floating in the sea are only a small percentage of everything we have thrown into the marine environment,” she said. “ However, first estimations reveal that Posidonia balls could catch up to 867 million plastics per year.”
The Mediterranean contains high quantities of floating plastics, and Posidonia seagrass occupies large areas of the sea, to depths of 40m.
“This is why we need to protect and preserve these vulnerable ecosystems,” conclude the researchers, whose study is published this month in Scientific Reports.