Drone Survey and Cleanup
Island Beach State Park
March 2, 2018

The following images were taken following a drone survey on Island Beach State Park in New Jersey. A 50 meter by 6meter area of the survey was selected to collect and classify the types and quantity of litter deposited on the beach. The results are typical for the type of marine litter we have recorded on the beach during the past four months. If the sand were sifted to a depth of 1 foot we would expect to find 2-3 times as much litter. For example, the soft plastic bags, bottle caps, balloons, etc  are easily covered by sand and show only a small portion on top of the sand.

 

Items Collected and sorted by size and type of marine litter
Small plastic fragments 0.5cm to 10cm
soft fragments 10-20cm Plastic rope & string Medium hard plastic food wrappers
Plastic straws
Food wrappers Plastic drink bottles
Plastic rope fragments & cord
Large drink containers Glass bottles
Plastic bottle caps
most frequent litter
washed up on the
beach, easily covered
by sand
Soft plastic bags - frequently found
Clear plastic bags are most frequent type, but colored palstic bags are also found
Mylar balloons are common as is the colorful ribbon used to tie the balloons.
Birds are attracted to the ribbons and small pieces of brightly colored balloons.
Plastic bottles and drink containers
Cataloging and tallying the various types of plastic and other objects deposited on the beach by tides and left by visitors.
(No, not the car or me)

Types of plastic in the collection shown above. Total items 247

Bottle caps - 63;  plastic fragments on white towels 62;
Straws - 19;   rope/string - 14;   food/candy wrappers - 22;
Balloons - 6 with multiple loose strings from other ballons;
Soft plastic bags - 12;  hard plastic - 34
Plastic dring bottles - 9;  Glass bottles - 2;
Large plastic - 3 drink; partial plastic container - 1

This is just a small periodic sample. but it is consistent with what we are finding in our beach drone surveys.