Please prevent plastic from entering the Clyde is the plea from a respected marine educational centre in Millport.

The Field Studies Council is alerting visitors to the island to be mindful of litter and the growing threat of plastic on our shores.

In a message to holidaymakers on the Cal Mac ferry, the FSC state: "Building sandcastles on the beach has always been a highlight of families visiting the scenic town of Millport.

"The satisfaction of lifting your bucket to reveal a perfectly shaped pile of sand with intricate details is enough to please anyone, child or adult. However, after a long day of building sand castles in the sun it can be easy to forget to pick up your bucket as you head off home.

"Unfortunately, most lost plastic items find their way to the ocean. In the 2014 Marine Litter Report by Surfers Against Sewage, it was estimated that approximately 58% of marine litter comes from recreational beach activities.

"Plastic is a persistent material and most of the plastic ever created is still in existence today in some form. After years at sea, plastic items break down into much smaller plastic particles known as microplastics which can be harmful to wildlife as it is often mistaken for food.

"We can prevent plastic items from entering our seas and harming our wildlife. Make sure to pick up your bucket and take it home to use on your next beach trip or donate it to a local charity shop or school where it can be used again by other children. Just this one step

can prevent unnecessary and harmful plastic pollution from entering our seas.

"As we become more and more aware of plastic pollution people are making the effort to bring about positive changes in our attitude towards plastic usage. FSC Millport encourage all our visitors to reduce, reuse and recycle wherever possible and by 2020 we aim to reduce all our single use plastic to zero."

On the Caledonian MacBrayne ferry between Largs and Cumbrae, the FSC have a poster about microplastics to learn of more ways to prevent plastic from entering our oceans.

The environmental posters were launched in time for the busy Easter holiday period.