Seven kilograms of plastic bags found inside dead deer in national park

Yahoo News Australia and agencies

A 10-year-old deer was found dead after it had swallowed seven kilograms of plastic and other rubbish in a national park.

The deer was found in a national park in Thailand’s Nan province, about 630 kilometres north of Bangkok.

An autopsy discovered "plastic bags in the stomach, which is one of the causes of his death", said Kriangsak Thanompun, director of the protected region in the Khun Sathan National Park.

The body of a dead dear was found with plastic bags and underwear in its stomach, in Khun Sathan national park in Nan Province. Source: EPA.
The body of a dead dear was found with plastic bags and underwear in its stomach, in Khun Sathan national park in Nan Province. Source: EPA.

The bags contained coffee grounds, instant noodle packaging, garbage bags, towels and also underwear, according to photos provided by the national park.

Thailand is one of the world's largest consumers of plastic, with residents using up to 3,000 single-use plastic bags each per year, whether for wrapping street food, takeaway coffee or packing groceries, according to AFP.

The news of the deer comes just months after a sick baby dugong from Thailand miraculously recovered only to die from an infection which was exacerbated by plastic bits in her stomach.

The dugong, named Mariam was mourned on social media and her death revived discussions of the country urgently needing to tackle its plastic problem.

The veterinarians found about seven kilograms of plastic bags and other trash in the stomach of a dead deer after an autopsy, officials said. Source: EPA.
The veterinarians found about seven kilograms of plastic bags and other trash in the stomach of a dead deer after an autopsy, officials said. Source: EPA.

One piece of plastic in Mariam’s stomach measured up to 20 centimetres in length.

“She taught us how to love and then went away as if saying please tell everyone to look after us and conserve her species,” vet Nantarika Chansue posted on Facebook.

Mr Thanompun described the deer’s death as “another tragedy”.

"It shows we have to take seriously and reduce... single-use plastic," he said, calling for "nature-friendly products" to be used instead.

Several major retailers - including the operator of the ubiquitous 7-Eleven convenience stores - have pledged to stop handing out single-use plastic bags by January next year.

- with AFP

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