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Marine scientist micro-plastic 'serendipity' at Port Erin

Professor encouraged students to count small litter in data sets

A scientist has revealed how his work beach cleaning on the Isle of Man made him realise the problem of micro-plastics.

Professor of Marine Biology at Plymouth University Richard Thompson, began noticing the amount of plastic he found during research for his PhD at the Marine Biological Station in Port Erin.

Professor Thompson spent four years on the Island understanding the feeding habits of molluscs, but is now 'hooked on the subject' of marine litter.

Speaking on the Life Scientific podcast for BBC Sounds, he says finding his work being littered by plastic was 'serendipity':

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