Aria the Albatross and her seabird friends have a problem: They keep throwing up garbage. When she sets out on a long-distance flight across the Pacific Ocean to find out why, she meets other wildlife having trouble with trash. Monk Seal is trapped by a strapping band, Humpback Whale is hopelessly tangled in a ghost fishing net, and Sea Turtle is choking on a plastic bag he thought was a jellyfish.
Once-beautiful beaches, reefs and open oceans are littered by discarded fishing gear, disposable lighters, plastic bags and bottle caps, creating unimaginable hazards for the creatures that live there. As Aria learns, humans are both the cause-and the solution-to the ever-increasing problem of marine pollution.
With its imagery-laden prose, emotional poetry, and delightful illustrations, Garbage Guts becomes a call for action to preserve some of our planet's most fragile habitats for the wildlife that depends on them.
Dr. Heidi Auman, a pioneer in the research of plastic ingestion, has studied human effects on seabirds for twenty-five years. She lived on Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge in the middle of the Pacific Ocean for seven years studying Laysan albatross and marine debris and contaminants, finding that more than 97 percent of the birds had ingested plastic trash, often many handfuls of it. Heidi also has documented chemical pollutants in Great Lakes birds, effects of junk food on urban gulls and plastic ingestion in subantarctic and Tasmanian seabirds.
Heidi was raised in Michigan and has studied birds around the world, and she now lives in a nest of her own with her husband, James, in Tasmania. Although she has published many scientific journal articles, this passionate researcher wanted to write a book aimed at younger readers in hopes they would take up the cause and promote solutions to this global ecological issue.