BiOPs - Biological Indicators of
The main goal of the BiOPs Network is to improve the health of the North Pacific Ocean by reducing the amount of plastic pollution entering the marine food webs. To this end, we are using seabirds and fish as biological samplers of litter at sea and quantifying changes in the amount and types of bioavailable plastic pollution levels in the major oceanographic regions of the North Pacific.
Oikonos conducted a review of the 'state of knowledge' that demonstrated that the phenomenon of seabird plastic ingestion has been widely documented in seabirds and warrants an urgent need to implement a robust approach to quantify the severity of exposure and trends over time.
Our approach is to quanify plastic ingestion at three scales:
North Pacific Network
Standardizing plastic ingestion studies across oceans
To standardize quantification of plastic ingestion in both
the North Pacific and Atlantic, Oikonos and the Marine
Wildlife and Veterinary Care and Research Center hosted a week-long
workshop to standardize techniques with the successful program
in the North Sea managed by Jan van Franeker of IMARES. Biologists
from 7 institutions participated (see collaborators).