Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Unknown Contaminant Found In Seabird Eggs

Date:
December 11, 1998
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
A previously unknown contaminant, similar to PCBs and dioxins, and suspected to be of marine origin, has been found in the eggs of Atlantic and Pacific Ocean seabirds. If a marine organism is proven to be the source, it would be the first instance of a naturally produced organohalogen accumulating in the eggs of wild birds.

A previously unknown contaminant, similar to PCBs and dioxins, and suspected to be of marine origin, has been found in the eggs of Atlantic and Pacific Ocean seabirds. If a marine organism is proven to be the source, it would be the first instance of a naturally produced organohalogen accumulating in the eggs of wild birds.

The research is reported in the Nov. 19 Web edition of Environmental Science & Technology, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society. The article also will appear in the journal's Jan. 1 print edition.

Concentrations of the contaminant were significantly higher in eggs from the Pacific Ocean, as much as 1.5 to 2.5 times higher, according to the article. "In addition," notes one of the study's primary researchers, Dr. Ross Norstrom, Ph.D., of the Canadian Wildlife Service, "storm petrels, which feed on small fish and other organisms that live near the surface of the ocean, had higher levels than diving birds that feed at lower ocean depths." This would suggest, he believes, that the contaminant exists primarily in the surface layer of the ocean.

Generally, scientific thinking is that "all organohalogens that accumulate in wildlife are from industrial sources or other human activities," says Sheryl Tittlemier, principal author of the research article and a Ph.D. candidate at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. "The novel organohalogen appears to be a marine phenomenon since it was found in Atlantic and Pacific Ocean seabird eggs, but was absent in herring gull eggs from the freshwater environment of the Great Lakes." The contaminant, whose source is not yet identified, contains high levels of chlorine, bromine and nitrogen, Tittlemier says.

Researchers don't know what effect the contaminant may have on the eggs. "We're planning on doing some toxicological studies to see if the compound has any biological activity," according to Tittlemier.

The study, done by researchers from Carleton University, the Canadian Wildlife Service in British Columbia and Quebec, and the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, examined the eggs of numerous birds, including various species of albatross, auklet, gull, puffin and storm petrel.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "Unknown Contaminant Found In Seabird Eggs." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 December 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/12/981211083152.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (1998, December 11). Unknown Contaminant Found In Seabird Eggs. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/12/981211083152.htm
American Chemical Society. "Unknown Contaminant Found In Seabird Eggs." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/12/981211083152.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Washington Wildlife Center Goes Nuts Over Baby Squirrels

Washington Wildlife Center Goes Nuts Over Baby Squirrels

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) An animal rescue in Washington state receives an influx of orphaned squirrels, keeping workers busy as they nurse them back to health. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Experimental Ebola Drug ZMapp Cures Lab Monkeys Of Disease

Experimental Ebola Drug ZMapp Cures Lab Monkeys Of Disease

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) In a new study, a promising experimental treatment for Ebola managed to cure a group of infected macaque monkeys. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins