On first sight the Yarra bank at Fishermans Bend looked like it had already been visited by a Clean Up Australia crew. But on closer inspection 1,151 nurdles were collected in just a couple of metres south of the punt landing.
Nurdles are so small and lightweight that when dropped on industrial loading bays and/or factory floors they can soon escape to stormwater drains that lead to the Bay. Once in waterways they attract and absorb chemical contaminants, float in the upper water column and get mistaken for food by fish and seabirds.
But apart from that they’re a great invention! Given their documented capacity for serious ecological harm immediate attention needs to be given to track down the source and prevent their ongoing influx to waterways.