Nine Deer in Sacred Japanese Sanctuary Die After Eating Plastic Bags The Nara Deer Preservation Foundation recently reported that a number of their famed deer have died due to masses of plastic in their stomachs.
Out of 14 deer that died between March and June, nine are believed to have died from malnutrition due to stomach blockages.
One deer was found to have over nine pounds of trash in its stomach, mainly plastic bags and food wrappers.
Nara Park, located in Nara, Japan, is home to over 1000 deer that are considered national treasures of the city.
According to Rie Maruko of the Foundation, the plastic is left by tourists who visit the park and feed deer unauthorized snacks.
Rie Maruko, via Japan Today “Shika sembei” is a sugar-free deer cracker that is sold in plastic- free wrapping in nearby shops.
Following the deer’s deaths, volunteers cleaned up over 68 pounds of plastic waste in the park.
The Nara government is also planning to launch an investigation into the animal’s deaths.