Expert says ""If you have 80 plastic bags in your stomach, you die"

A pilot whale has died in Thailand after swallowing 80 plastic bags.

The mammal was found alive in a canal near the southern border with Malaysia, but attempts made to nurse it back to health failed.

Thailand is one of the world's largest consumers of plastic bags and hundreds of marine animals die after ingesting plastic in its waters each year.

Thon Thamrongnawasawat, a marine biologist and lecturer at Kasetsart University, said the bags had made it impossible for the whale to eat any nutritional food.

"If you have 80 plastic bags in your stomach, you die," he said.

Mr Thamrongnawasawat added that at least 300 marine animals, including pilot whales, sea turtles and dolphins, perish each year in Thai waters after ingesting plastic.

He said: "It's a huge problem. We use a lot of plastic."

Graphic images have been released online and on social media to show the extent of the damage caused to the animal:

Translated text: "On June 2, 2, 5, 1 By Research Research Center. The bottom of the Thai Gulf reported the symptoms of a short pilot whale that was separated at khlong nat cuddle that the evening of June 1, the whale had a strong contraction, and a large plastic bag came out, and then the whale began to seizure and wait for a plastic bag to come In 5, the veterinary team and the authorities have been raised to cure drugs and help to carry out the full force. Finally, the whale has died at 1 6. 4 5 PM When the surgery was found, there was a plastic bag in the stomach. Total 8 KG. UP TO 8 0 Cards."