Microplastics on Silkworms (Tubifex Spp) in the Brantas River, Indonesia

Document Type : Original Research Paper

Authors

Environmental Health, Poltekkes Kemenkes Surabaya, Jl. Menur No.118 A Kampus Menur, Surabaya, Indonesia, 64123

Abstract

Microplastics can contaminate water owing to their small size. If aquatic biota consume microplastics, they disrupt their reproductive processes, digestive tracts, and development. This study aimed to identify microplastic waste from silkworms (Tubifex spp.) in the Brantas River. The study was conducted in a descriptive manner by collecting samples of microplastic waste from silkworms and examining the shape, type, amount, and percentage of microplastic abundance in the river. An FTIR test was used to determine the microplastic content. Using a Zeiss Axio Zoom.V16 at 50x magnification, microplastic particles from individual worms and worm samples were visually identified. Then, the 50% hot needle test was used to determine the composition of the plastic. A total of 263 microplastic particles were found in the worm samples. Silkworms (Tubifex spp.) in the Brantas River, Kediri City, were shown to contain four types of microplastics, namely fibers, filaments, fragments, and granules, which were dominated by filament particles with 49% filament content, 45% fiber, 5% fragments, and 1% granules. The microplastic polymers identified via FTIR were polyethylene and ethylene-polypropylene-diene copolymers. These microplastics can originate from plastic bags, used drinking bottles, rope fibers, and pieces of water hose, which are often found around the Brantas River. Silkworms found in the Brantas River contain microplastic waste from various pollution sources.

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