This moving footage of a mother pilot whale carrying her dead newborn left viewers of Blue Planet II in tears and vowing to take better care of the environment.
Sir David Attenborough explains in the clip that humans “dump eight million tonnes of plastic into the sea” every year, and it “entangles and drowns a vast number of creatures” – including this whale calf.
He then says: “This mother has been carrying her newborn around, but it’s dead.
“She’s reluctant to let it go, it’s been dead for many days.”
Fans of the BBC show were quick to share how the bereft mother whale made them feel with some even going so far so to promise to never use plastic again.
— Emily Griffiths (@Emily_Griff) November 19, 2017
blue planet really hits hard , humans really are disgusting and unnecessary, it’s not our home to poison and ruin , that whale carried it’s deAd BABY around for days because plastic killed it , WE DID THAT
— (@m_dithh) November 19, 2017
me: after seeing the dead baby whale on blue planet & ready to fight every plastic bag ever made pic.twitter.com/J0Ap9Za5oY
— cosy girl (@lucyrbecca) November 19, 2017
Sir David then continued to explain how plastic breaks down and becomes toxic, making it “lethal” to top predators like these whales.
He added: “The calf may have been poisoned by the mother’s own contaminated milk.”
As a group of slow-moving whales were shown, he continued: “Pilot whales have big brains, and they can certainly experience emotions.
“Judging the adults, the loss of the infant has affected the entire family.”
Blue planet II is smashing ratings with last week’s episode even ‘breaking the internet’ in China.
According to reports, more than 80m Chinese people tuned in, causing the nation’s internet to slow down.
Blue Planet II continues on Sunday on BBC1 at 8pm.