Monday, February 18, 2013

Midway Island: Miracles and Tragedy

Let's start with the good news, which is that a  62-year-old Laysan Albatross given the name "Wisdom" has hatched her 35th chick on Midway Atoll in the middle of the Pacific, making her the oldest successful avian mother in recorded history.

Now the bad news:  albatross like Wisdom are routinely dying prematurely due to hooks used by long-line fisherman and from plastic and other floating detritus eaten by the birds,.  Watch the video, below, showing Mother Nature's post-mortem.  This is what plastic in the ocean does.


Rick said...

I never liked throwing trash over the side, but I did what I was told, when I worked in the galley, and later, on deck. The Gulf of Mexico was dirty enough from the silt coming down out of the Mississippi, and don't get me started on how dirty the Mediterranean was! We'd been dumping there for thousands of years, and it showed. At least we weren't allowed to dump anywhere near a port. Forty years ago it was bad enough. I can only imagine how bad it is now.

Rick said...

But on the other hand, it's nice to know that an albatross only slightly older than me is still going strong! I'd like to think it was one of those majestic birds that followed us across the Pacific, back when me and her were 20 years old.