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  1. ITV Report

The poison of plastic captured in one heartbreaking image

The Great crested grebe offers a piece of plastic to its mate Credit: Mary Wilde

A Great crested grebe has been photographed offering a piece of plastic to its mate.

The birds are well known for their courtship rituals but instead of collecting a piece of weed or plant to offer its loved one, this grebe dived down and came back with some discarded plastic to impress its mate.

The picture was taken at a lake near Clay Cross, south of Chesterfield.

Plastic pollution has been big news recently.....but the problem is so close to home, not just in far-away oceans and this photo is a stark reminder of that.

In Derbyshire, plastic is clogging up our rivers and places that should be havens for wildlife. We have all contributed and we all need to make changes in order to prevent plastic waste.

– Kaite Helps, Derbyshire Wildlife Trust

The image is the latest in a series of pictures released showing the impact of plastic pollution on wildlife.

In Nottinghamshire in November a pregnant deer was found dead by the side of the road with its head trapped inside a plastic bag.

The council said the death of the deer brought the issue of discarded plastic 'sharply into focus' Credit: Newark & Sherwood District Council

Tips on how to use Less Plastic (credit: Derbyshire Wildlife Trust)

  • Ditch the exfoliating shower puff or if you must use them, replace every few weeks because of the bacteria that builds up on the netting.
  • Consider using unpackaged bar soap instead of shower gel.
  • Avoid clingfilm, use a re-usable box or a beeswax wrap instead.
  • If you're eating on the run, consider taking cutlery out with you as well as your re-usable coffee cup.