Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 430337
Title Organohalogen exposure in a Eurasian owl (Bubo bubo) population from Southeastern Spain: Temporal-spatial trends and risk assessment
Author(s) Gomez-Ramirez, P.; Martinez-Lopez, E.; Garcia-Fernandez, A.; Zweers, A.J.; Brink, N.W. van den
Source Chemosphere 88 (2012)8. - ISSN 0045-6535 - p. 903 - 911.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2012.03.014
Department(s) CWC - Environmental Risk Assessment
Alterra - Animal ecology
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2012
Keyword(s) brominated flame retardants - polybrominated diphenyl ethers - polychlorinated-biphenyls - organochlorine contaminants - haliaeetus-albicilla - hieraaetus-pennatus - breeding success - residue levels - great-lakes - eggs
Abstract Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organochlorine insecticides (OCs) were analysed in 58 Eurasian Eagle owl (Bubo bubo) unhatched eggs collected between 2004 and 2009 in Southeastern Spain. Levels of p,p'-DDE were found to be higher than in eggs laid by other European owls in the same decade, probably due to the greater agricultural activity in our study area. Compared to other European raptors, exposure to PCBs can be considered intermediate, but low to PBDEs. Land use differences and prey availability were the rationale to divide the study area in two subareas in further assessments. Temporal trends of HCB, p,p'-DDE, ß-HCH, PCBs and PBDEs were significantly different in each subarea, generally increasing over time in the Southern but decreasing or remaining stable in the Northern. On the contrary, levels of cyclodienes tended to decrease in both subareas. Dietary shifts with a greater amount of birds are suggested as a cause for increasing organochlorine loads in raptors. This may explain the increasing trend in the Southern territories. However, due to the proximity of most of these nests to Cartagena, an important industrial city, increasing environmental pollution cannot be ruled out. Although average levels of the compounds analysed are below threshold levels, 17% of the samples exceeded 400 pg g-1 ww (wet weight), the LOAEC for Total TEQs. Moreover, a negative correlation between TEQ concentrations and the metabolizable fraction of PCBs (Fprob = 0.0018) was found when TEQs values were above 10 pg g-1 ww. This could be indicative of hepatic enzymes induction in the birds exposed at higher concentrations, which are mainly breeding in the Southern subarea. These females could be suffering from Ah-receptor-related toxic effects, some of which have been related to altered bird reproduction. Finally, a significant negative correlation between p,p'-DDE levels and eggshell thickness (r = -0.469, p <0.001) was observed, with about 17% of eggshell thinning for eggs with p,p'-DDE levels above 100 µg g -1 lw. The persistence of this degree of thinning over a period of time has been related to population declines in other raptor species
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