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    Biodiversity Under Threat: Polish Storks’ Alarming Diet of Plastic Waste

    Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

    The diet of “Polish” storks reveals a disturbing reality, according to international research published in the “Environmental Science and Pollution Research.” Scientists from the Technical University of Munich, Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, University of Zielona Góra, and others analyzed regurgitated food remnants from 117 stork nests in southern and southwestern Poland’s rural areas, away from major waste sites.

    In over a third of the studied nesting pairs, artificial waste, predominantly plastic and cigarette filters, was found. These findings highlight an environmental pollution issue affecting even rural areas. Professor Piotr Tryjanowski from the University of Poznań emphasized, “What storks consume reflects our environment’s condition, signaling the urgent need to reduce human-generated pollution.”

    The analysis involved meticulous examination of regurgitated material, providing valuable insights into the ecological impact. Professor Jerzy Karg from the University of Zielona Góra, responsible for diet composition analysis, stated, “It requires specialized knowledge but yields incredible results.”

    This non-invasive method contrasts with past invasive practices, demonstrating the urgency of addressing pollution. The collaboration of researchers, ornithological societies, and energy companies facilitated this extensive study. The ease of data collection during the banding of young storks in nests played a crucial role in acquiring such comprehensive information.

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