Suspended microplastics in a highly polluted bay: Abundance, size, and availability for mesozooplankton.Mar Pollut Bull. 2018 Oct; 135:256-265.MP
Microplastic ingestion by mesozooplankton may be an important pathway for the microplastics to enter the food web. To determine microplastic abundance in Guanabara Bay, samples were collected by neustonic haul with a 64-μm-net and oblique hauls using 64- and 200-μm nets. Microplastic size and abundance as well as copepod, fish-larvae, and chaetognath sizes, densities, and preferential prey sizes were determined. Microplastic abundance was higher in samples collected with fine nets (average 4.8 microplastics m-3, maximum 11 microplastics m-3) than in those collected with coarse net. Microplastic abundance in Guanabara Bay was higher than that in other marine ecosystems. Microplastics >100 μm were too large to be ingested by copepods. However, for fish larvae and chaetognaths, the abundance of microplastics, at the corresponding prey size range, were, respectively, ~9000- and 14,400-folds lower than the preferential copepod prey, in the same size range. Thus, in Guanabara Bay, microplastics were available, but too diluted to be frequently ingested by fish larvae and chaetognaths.