Garbage Dumps and Food Habits of Animals: Study in journal Current Science

A study by Gitanjali Katlam and Soumya Prasad from School of Life Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU); Mohit Agarwal from Asian Adventures and Raman Kumar from Nature Science Initiative, examined the relationship between animal type and behaviour vis-à-vis the risk of plastic ingestion. The Study was published in the journal Current Science.

Findings of the Study

The study outlines the following findings:

  • Modern-day garbage dumps are full of harmful products and chemicals, are emerging as a serious threat to animal and plant life.
  • Plastic together with causing environmental pollution through chemicals leaching from it, plastics are causing health complications and disruptive reproductive patterns in animals that accidentally ingest it.
  • The food chain is witnessing an ecological shift wherein few animal species at some places are becoming more dependent on anthropological food waste.
  • The study warns of disastrous implications on wildlife if proper waste management strategies, particularly in and around natural sites and forest areas are not adopted.
  • Garbage dumping sites have resulted in both physical and toxicological implications on animal life. Plastics in the garbage which are ingested by wild animals is leading to lethal injuries and damage to digestive tract which results in starvation, ulceration of the stomach, reduced fitness, growth problems and premature death.

The study recommends that there should be segregation of waste generated from domestic and other activities at the source only in order to prevent harm to animal feeding on it and also to address the problem of the ecological impact of non-biodegradable waste accumulation.




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