This study investigated seasonal presence of microplastic (MP) in gastrointestinal tracts of red mullet (Mullus barbatus) sampled from the Southeast Black Sea Region. A total of 335 MPs were detected in 120 individuals. While the most MP was observed in the winter and autumn seasons, quite few MPs were found in the summer and spring seasons. MP size did not show significant difference among seasons. While all of the MPs in the autumn and spring and most of the MPs in the winter were fiber-shaped, most of the MPs in the summer were fragments. The most observed MP color for all seasons was white. While polymer structures did not show much variation in spring and summer, six different polymers were determined for both autumn and winter. In general, less MPs were detected during fishing ban period (summer) and the characteristic properties of the detected MPs suggest a MP pollution in the region due to intense fishing activities.
Elsevier, Marine Pollution Bulletin, Volume 191, June 2023, 114886 ,