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Beached whale had 30 plastic bags in its stomach

Beached whale had 30 plastic bags in its stomach

A whale that was put down after repeatedly becoming stranded was found to have more than 30 plastic bags blocking its digestive system.

According to the newspaper, there's a plan to show both the skeleton of the whale and the plastic in a new exhibition, when the natural history section of the University Museum of Bergen opens its doors again in summer 2019.

Experts in Norway say the findings are not surprising given that the amount of non-biodegradable waste in the seas continues to grow. They found the plastic bags in the cetacean's stomach and said the objects were the probable cause of death of the animal.

The beaked whale was also emaciated and had very little blubber - suggesting that they were badly malnourished. Scientists say the animal was in severe pain.

The Cuvier's beaked whale was put down by wardens at the weekend.

The 20ft whale was shot after several failed attempts to direct it out to sea. The mammals do not normally range in Norwegian waters.

A 2013 report from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) found that 20 million tons of plastic litter winds up in the ocean each year.

Because this particular type of whale - the Cuvier's beaked whale - eats squid, the researchers believe the whale mistook the bags for its natural food source.

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An estimated 100 billion carrier bags are used every year in Europe - with 8 billion ending up as litter.

The plastic - as well as candy wrappers, smaller bread bags and other garbage- was discovered during the necropsy.

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