Going around on social media is the story of ‘Goby The Fish’ – a plastic eating fish found on the beach in Malpe, India. But, it’s not quite what it first appears to be.
Goby The Fish is a beach sculpture that is being used to bring awareness about the damage done by plastic materials to marine life. The concept of Goby was created by sculptor Janardhan Havanje and is structurally made of iron rods. Standing almost 10ft tall and 8ft wide Goby is filled with plastic waste that was collected from the beach itself.
Speaking to the media Havenje said, “My sculpture is actually a trash bin, where people who visit the beach can dump garbage into it, instead of littering on the beach, which later flows into the sea water. The sculpture is also to bring awareness that marine life in the sea/ocean is actually consuming the disposed waste, and therefore we are losing many species of marine life due to plastic waste, which is creating an imbalance in the environment”.
Today, Malpe’s Goby The Fish is still being ‘fed’ on a daily basis. In fact, in one day he’s usually fed more than he needs. Goby is usually taken away by the city overnight to empty all his plastic that he’s eaten. He’s returned the next morning with an empty stomach so people can continue to feed him again.
Other global ‘Goby The Fish’
While Malpe beaches Goby may have been the first, there are others being erected all over the world. In Bali, one hotel has created it’s own ‘Goby The Fish’ in a public area close to the beach. Its aim is to encourage hotel guests and other visitors to recycle their plastic waste by ‘feeding’ Goby.
In the UK, one is being officially launched on Saturday, May 18th on the promenade at Westward Ho, Devon. This is one of the actions taking place through the day to highlight the growing need to clean up Britains beaches and rid them of plastic waste. Other activities include a morning beach clean to help fill the fish.
Does your local beach have a Goby The Fish? Would you use one if it was there? Do you think they look good, or dirty and smelly? We only think it’s a good thing and we’d love to see more of these across beaches all over the world.