WARNING: Photos could be considered graphic for some.
WAKATOBI, Indonesia (NBC News) – It appears that plastic ocean trash may have killed a sperm whale in Indonesia.
A sperm whale found dead in a national park in Indonesia had nearly 13 pounds of plastic waste in its stomach, including 115 cups, park officials said Tuesday.
The 31-foot long whale was found in waters near Kapota Island, part of the Wakatobi National Park, southeast of Sulawesi, the park said in a statement.
The park is famous among divers for its large area of reefs and diverse marine life including rays and whales.
The official cause of death was not announced, but park officials found plastic bottles, bags, sandals, and a sack with more than 1,000 pieces of string in the whale’s stomach.
In June, the death of a pilot whale in Thailand with 80 pieces of plastic rubbish in its stomach garnered headlines locally but drew more attention outside the country.