The environmental benefits of cetacean stranding are overlooked in coastal regulations

Credit: DOI: 10.1016 / j.ecoser.2022.101406

New studies have found that the environmental benefits of stranded whale and dolphin carcasses are undermined by coastal regulations that require rapid disposal of debris.

Researchers at the University of Stirling have studied the benefits of these corpses and how they are managed by various authorities around the world. They found that in most places, environmental benefits were overlooked.

The University of Stirling’s research was led by Dr. Martina Quaggiotto, a lecturer in the ecology of bio-environmental sciences. she said:” populationToday, more than 3 billion people live in coastal areas, putting significant environmental pressure on other organisms in these areas.

“The carcasses of whales, dolphins and porpoises (collectively cetaceans) provide important nutrients for scavengers such as crabs, seabirds and polar bears. The behavior of a cetacean has changed, someone who relies on them for food.

“They also increase the nutrients in the soil and sediments they lie on.”

Dr. Quaggiotto has collaborated with the University of Granada, the University of Glasgow, and other international organizations to conduct research.

Cost of carcass removal

Most of the research Coastal area It is now subject to restrictive regulations that require authorities to dispose of cetacean carcasses promptly, preventing them from fulfilling their “complex and essential” ecological role.

Dr. Quaggiotto said: Burial, incinerator, transportation to landfill. However, these practices have their own technical, social, economic, or environmental costs.

“We encourage you to reassess these practices to make them environmentally friendly and consider whether to move in each case. Carcass For more distant beaches, it may be desirable to close some of the beaches for a short time or split them for quick disassembly. Scavengers can strip dead bodies incredibly quickly, leaving it to their device. “

Studies have shown that, for example, in Belgium and France, where grounding is dense, carcasses are regularly transported to appropriate facilities and destroyed, compared to New Zealand and the United States, where most of the carcasses remain. In the UK, like many other countries, what happens depends on the municipality.

Grounding: A gift from nature

Researchers conducted a literature review and found that the current treatment of these corpses was inconsistent with past thinking about them. For example, in the 11th century, whales stranded on the British coast were called “royal fish,” oil was used as fuel for lamps, and tools and bones of works of art were used. The southernmost Patagonian coastal Fuego people regarded stranded whales as “a wonderful gift of nature,” and Australian Aborigines believed that stranded whales could connect them to ancestral land and sea.

Dr. Marcos Moreon Paiz, who led the research at the University of Granada, said: Connections, not separations, can bring multiple benefits to us and future generations. “

The paper “Past, Present, Future of Ecosystem Services Provided by Cetacean Carcasses” was published in a magazine. Ecosystem services..

Polar bears got angry with whales to survive the warmer months of the past.Not enough as the climate warms

For more information:
M.-Martina Quaggiotto et al, Past, Present, Future, Ecosystem Services Provided by Cetacean Carcasses, Ecosystem services (2022). DOI: 10.1016 / j.ecoser.2022.101406..… ii / S221204162200002X

Quote: The environmental benefits of cetacean stranding are coastal regulations obtained on February 17, 2022 from https: // (2022). It was overlooked on February 17, 2014).

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The environmental benefits of cetacean stranding are overlooked in coastal regulations

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