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Turkish Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 2022, Vol 22, Num, 7     (Pages: TRJFAS20603)

Microplastics in Turkish Straits System: A Case Study of the Bays and Straits

Yaprak Gürkan 1 ,Ahsen Yüksek 1

1 İstanbul University, Institute of Marine Sciences and Management, Mollahüsrev Mah. Müşküle Sok. 34134 Fatih, İstanbul, Turkey DOI : 10.4194/TRJFAS20603 Viewed : 2281 - Downloaded : 1472 When plastics were first created as easy to create, long-lasting materials, there was no environmental foresight. Now all plastics pollute including land, water, groundwater have been penetrated all levels of the food chain. Plastic fragmentation into smaller-sized particles and their entering into various environments in directly small sizes created a new global issue of high concern known as microplastics. This study was undertaken for better understanding the microplastic abundance, type and size distribution in the most populous region of Turkey by analyzing surface water and water column properties in the Turkish straits system in 2016. Our results showed that surface water microplastics ranged between 0.17 and 2.52 item/m3, while in water column abundance was between 4.12 to 34.90 items/m3. The proportional concentration of fibers was higher in water column samples (between 100% and 59.49%) than in surface water samples (between 70.59% and 19.75%). Microplastics between 0.3 and 2.0 mm had a ratio of 76.80 %. Considering the straits` boundaries, the entrance of the İstanbul Strait had more than two fold of microplastics than that in the exit of Dardanelles in water column. Heavily industrialized/urbanized bays had higher microplastics concentration where point and non-point sources considered as disturbances. Keywords : TSS Marine litter Microplastics The Sea of Marmara Mediterranean Sea