A photo of a seagull carrying a disposable face mask has sparked concerns about responsible waste management. The demand for face masks has skyrocketed amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, with many countries making them mandatory while stepping out.
In this heartbreaking photo, taken in the United Kingdom, a bird is seen walking with a face mask in its beak. According to Burnham & Highbridge Weekly News, the picture was taken in the town of Weston-super-Mare.
A 52-year-old resident of the town, Nick, was cycling when he saw the seagull walking on the beach with the discarded face mask. He said: "I'd been out and about on my bicycle down the seafront and through town and I just started to notice all these face masks discarded everywhere."I took some photos and then I caught this seagull with one in his beak, he was only young and was pulling it about, it was upsetting to see."
The town, a popular holiday destination, has been left littered with discarded masks and PPE, according to locals.
The picture was shared on Twitter by businessman Dhanraj Nathwani and Indian Forest Service officer Susanta Nanda, among others.
"This photo sends out a strong message to us that we need to handle our #biowaste more responsibly!" Mr Nathwani wrote while sharing it. "Given the huge volume of #waste, we need to be careful that #COVID19 does not spread through the waste to other humans or #wildlife or contaminate the soil or #water."