The Department of Conservation says a plastic bottle found in the stomach of a southern royal albatross – or toroa – caused its death. It says the bird was found in an emaciated condition by members of the public at Whirinaki Beach, just north of Napier. The albatross was taken to Wildlife Base in Palmerston North but died two days later. An autopsy was carried out and the findings suggest starvation was the likely cause of death, with plastic items obstructing the stomach. And DOC says this isn’t the first time a southern royal albatross – or toroa – has been affected by plastic here. DOC principal science advisor Graeme Taylor speaks to Kim Savage.