Extraordinary amounts of marine plastic have washed up on a protected area of the Kent coastline this winter, say wildlife experts.
Everything from fishing equipment to small fragments of plastic rubbish have been dragged onto the beach threatening animals and their delicate environment.
A ‘high frequency’ of storm surges is understood to be behind the onslaught of plastic making its way into this section of the county's coast which is designated a National Nature Reserve.
Nina explains: “This winter we’ve seen a huge amount of marine plastic washing up on the beach
“We have had a particularly high frequency of storm surges - so that’s when we get a bulge on top of the sea due to low pressure systems and high winds and high tides.
“That’s meant we have seen extraordinary amounts of marine plastic getting washed up onto the beach.”
Nina and her team have been attempting to regularly collect the litter that has made it onto the beach in an attempt to stop it being dragged back into the sea.
A family beach clean is also taking place this February half term to gather some extra pairs of hands to tackle the job.
She says everything from dolly rope from trawler nets, to tin cans, rubber gloves, and clothing are among the non-biodegradable items staff have been sifting through - with the rubbish being funneled from the Channel and dragged towards this quiet and picturesque area of coastline.
Marine plastic can be ‘incredibly dangerous’, says Nina, with the rope and other litter at risk of getting caught in the beaks and around the feet of birds or the necks of seals - alongside the additional risk animals will digest it.
Today’s family beach clean took place between 10am and noon.
The charity hopes the activity, alongside making the space safer for wildlife, will also serve as a good environmental lesson for youngsters who can learn more about the risks of marine plastic.