A new campaign group - Clean Coast Outer Hebrides - has been formed to tackle the
rising tide of beach litter.
Clean Coast Outer Hebrides coordinator Janet Marshall says litter blown ashore in
the Western Isles is a huge problem with the sea and tide shifting rafts of rubbish
to different beaches.
The amount of plastics and fishing debris washed ashore is growing annually, creating
potentially deadly problems for marine wildlife.
The gulf stream swirling up from Gulf of Mexico dumps litter on the shores of the
But nets, creels and ropes broken off from local salmon farms and fishing activities
during storms also end up on the beach.
Seals and dolphins get entangled in floating ropes while swallowing plastic debris
can eventually kill whales.
Now an unprecedented number of volunteers are getting involved in cleaning up the
seaside across the islands.
Teaming up with Surfers Against Sewage during their official Big Spring Beach Clean
running until 15 April, the local campaign is encouraging all islanders and visitors
to head out to the coast for a personal mini beach clean.
North Harris Trust is also organising beach cleans in their area including one at
Outend Scalpay on Saturday.
By weighing rubbish collected on the beach with their bathroom or luggage scales
and sending the weight to CleanCoastOH@gmail.com, participants will contribute to
the running grand total.
Recent beach cleans have included a massive effort at Sandwick Bay when over 220kg
of plastic was removed by more than 50 volunteers including pupils from Stornoway
A community clean up in Barra on Saturday filled a whole skip and they are hosting
a Great Technicolour Nurdle Hunt this coming weekend.
Huisinish beach is a big favourite with tourists in summer but the amount of rubbish
is an eyesore.