Microplastics in marine food webs

Setala, O, Lehtiniemi, M, Coppock, RL and Cole, MJ 2018 Microplastics in marine food webs. In: Zeng, Eddy Y, (ed.) Microplastic Contamination in Aquatic Environments: An Emerging Matter of Environmental Urgency. Elsevier.

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Official URL: https://www.elsevier.com/books/microplastic-contam...


Microplastic debris is a globally-pervasive contaminant, which presents a substantial risk to marine biota, food webs and ecosystems. Microplastics are heterogeneously distributed, with highest concentrations associated with the oligotrophic subtropical gyres, and relatively biologically-productive semi-enclosed seas and coastal waters. Encounter rates between biota and microplastics are driven by their geographical overlap and relative concentrations, as well as the characteristics of the plastic, and the motility, detection capabilities and feeding strategy of the organism. We identify four main routes via which microplastics can infiltrate marine food webs: ingestion, inhalation, entanglement and trophic transfer. Drawing upon established research and more recent exposure studies using microplastics, we highlight how plastics can be detected, ingested, processed and rejected by filter feeders. Finally, we consider how marine organisms can affect microplastics, by incorporating the plastic into biological matrices, through to the movement, redistribution and burial of plastic.

Item Type: Publication - Book Section
Divisions: Plymouth Marine Laboratory > Science Areas > Marine Ecology and Biodiversity
Depositing User: Dr Matthew Cole
Date made live: 16 Aug 2018 14:46
Last Modified: 25 Apr 2020 09:59
URI: https://plymsea.ac.uk/id/eprint/7903

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