Balloons Kill Our Wildlife!!
Balloons float up into the air and disappear from your thoughts, but not from our environment. Beach litter surveys organised by the Marine Conservation Society have shown that the number of balloons and balloon pieces found on UK beaches has tripled in the last 10 years. Beach cleans conducted by NOMAD Sea Kayaking on beaches and landings has shown significant increases in the collection of large balloons, plastic holding straws and synthetic tethers all of which are a danger to all of our wildlife.
- 10% of released balloons don’t burst; they float back down to earth where they pose a serious threat to wildlife.
- Dolphins, whales, turtles, seabirds and other animals have all been killed by balloons.
- If swallowed, balloons can block an animal’s gut and cause it to starve.
- Animals can become entangled in balloon ribbons and string, restricting their movement and their ability to feed.
- Even biodegradable latex balloons are a danger as they can take several months or even years to break down.
- Turtles are particularly at risk as they can confuse balloons with their jellyfish prey.
- Mass balloon releases have already been banned by several local authorities in the UK, USA and Australia. • Don’t let go!
You can enjoy balloons without harming wildlife.
Don’t let go of balloons outdoors! Fill your balloons with air rather than helium and use balloons made of natural rubber latex rather than mylar (foil) balloons. When tying balloons use natural cotton string rather than plastic ribbon and securely tie any balloons that are used outside. Always hand tie balloons rather than using plastic valves and sign up to the ‘Don’t Let Go’ petition on the Marine Conservation Society website www.mcsuk.org.
Courtesy of the Marine Conservation Society