Dec 14, 2004

Assessing breeding potential of peregrine falcons based on chlorinated hydrocarbon concentrations in prey

Environmental Pollution
J E ElliottL K Wilson


Peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus) now breed successfully in most areas of North America from which they were previously extirpated. The loss during the mid-part of the last century of many of the world's peregrine populations was largely a consequence of impaired reproduction caused by the effects of DDE on eggshell quality and embryo hatchability. Population recovery has been attributed to re-introduction efforts, coupled with regulatory restrictions on the use of organochlorine pesticides. Peregrines have not returned to breed in some areas, such as the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia. That region has been extensively planted in fruit orchards which were treated annually with DDT during the early 1950s to the 1970s. Ongoing contamination of avian species, including potential peregrine prey, inhabiting orchards has been documented. In response to an initiative to release peregrines around the city of Kelowna in the Okanagan Valley, we collected potential peregrine prey species and analyzed whole bodies for chlorinated hydrocarbon residues. We used a simple bioaccumulation model to predict concentrations of DDE in peregrine eggs using concentrations in prey and estimates of dietary makeup as input. Peregrines would be ex...Continue Reading

  • References8
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  • References8
  • Citations8

Mentioned in this Paper

Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated
DDT (Insecticide)
Entire Embryo
Idiopathic Atrophic Hypothyroidism
Typha latifolia

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