Cardisoma guanhumiInternationalIndiaAfricaThe Great Pacific Garbage Patch is the largest accumulation of ocean plastic in the world, and it is now coming to life. However, the origin of the creatures inhabiting the area remains a mystery. A recent study published in the journal, Nature Ecology & Evolution, reveals that thriving communities of coastal creatures, such a small crabs and anemones, have been found on plastic debris in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a U-like area in the ocean between California and Hawaii that covers up to 620,000 square miles. The study’s findings propound that these plastics in the ocean might be spawning complex new floating ecosystems.The research team discovered dozens of species of coastal invertebrate organisms that were able to survive and reproduce on plastic garbage that has been floating in the ocean for years. Unlike organic material that decomposes and sinks within a short time, plastic debris can drift in the oceans for much longer, creating new floating ecosystems of species that would not normally survive in the open ocean.WorldPlastic to Outnumber Fish in Ocean by 2050 at Current Consumption Rate: Russian Gov’t21 January, 10:29 GMTThe study’s lead author, Linsey Haram, said that the consequences of introducing new species to remote ocean areas are not yet fully understood and there is likely to be competition for space and food resources between coastal and open ocean species. Researches have traced the evidence of coastal organisms eating their pelagic counterparts.The discovery of active communities of coastal creatures on plastic debris in the open ocean raises concerns about the potential for these species to spread to new regions and disrupt existing ecosystems.


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