Cape Town Harbour Trawl

Headed out in the harbour the other day, Cape Town Waterfront to be precise. The mission once again to hunt plastic litter. But not just any kind of plastic, and not with any normal net.Greeting wary onlookers with a raise of my spear, they pondered deeply about what creature we were trawling behind us.

Imitating the Manta's skeleton, wings and mouth parts as the blueprint for the design of this peculiar craft - A thin tail leads to floating wings surround a gaping mouth.

Inspired by nature and the 5 Gyres trawling device. This beast has a strict diet of microplastics. Using a 2mm fine netting, water is funneled to a zipped up tail, where samples are removed for analysis.

The threat that these tiny broken degraded polymers is that they outnumber plankton dramatically in all the major oceanic gyres of the world. If the problem only gets worse, the marine animals all over the world that have a microbiotic diet will thus ingest plastic on a regular basis leaving them starved/choked to death and to more issues further up the food chain.

The samples collected as well as the Manta are currently on display at the Two Oceans Aquarium...