More tiny plastic nurdles spotted on beaches in Norfolk by volunteers, this time in Horsey known for its seal colony

Overhead picture of seals and peope on Horsey beach. Picture: Mike Page

Overhead picture of seals and peope on Horsey beach. Picture: Mike Page - Credit: Picture: Mike Paige

More tiny fragments of plastic have washed up on Norfolk's beaches.

An example of nurdles which have washed up on Britain's beaches. Photo: Natalie Welden

An example of nurdles which have washed up on Britain's beaches. Photo: Natalie Welden - Credit: PA

In a recent search at Horsey beach, known for its large seal colony, 100 nurdles were found during a 45 minute search.

Most were gathered at the back of the beach near grass where it was sandy. The volunteers said they could not spot them amongst pebbles as it was too difficult.

MORE: Meet the nurdle - the latest threat to wildlife off Norfolk's beachesOther searches have revealed higher concentrations also at Overstrand, Bacton and Eccles, in north Norfolk. Concentrations were lower at Titchwell, in north-west Norfolk, and Walcott also in north Norfolk.

Nurdles are the name given to the lentil-sized pieces of plastic used by industry to make new products.

High concentrations of nurdles have been reported on beaches on the north Norfolk coast. Picture: Ka

High concentrations of nurdles have been reported on beaches on the north Norfolk coast. Picture: Kayleigh O'dell - Credit: Archant

They can enter the food chain when ingested by marine creatures, and there are concerns they could end up contaminating food consumed by humans.


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Volunteers have been scouring beaches the length and breadth of Britain as part of the Great Nurdle Hunt organised by Scottish charity Fidra.

A spokesman for the organisation said: 'New nurdles are washing up on our shores but we don't have detailed evidence of where they are coming from or how widespread the problem is.

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'Findings from The Great Nurdle Hunt will help us show the local plastics industry the extent of the nurdle pollution on our shores.'

The small, light-weight nurdles can escape into the environment throughout their manufacture, transport or use, spilt into rivers and oceans or getting into drains where they are washed out to sea, with billions lost in the UK each year.

A study has also found chemicals which leach from the plastics can contaminate shellfish.

The RSPB and other conservation groups are backing a nurdle free oceans campaign.

One of the worst affected areas in England is the South West coast as is the first port of call for plastic litter washed up from the Atlantic Ocean by the gulf stream.

Pellet sightings are commonplace on both the south and north coasts of Cornwall and Devon and over whopping 400,000 nurdles were collected during a clean-up of just one single cove in Tregantle, Cornwall by the FIDRA charity.

To take part in the Great Nurdle Hunt, and to find out more go to: www.nurdlehunt.org.uk

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