Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center
Selenium and metal concentrations in waterbird eggs and chicks at Agassiz National Wildlife Refuge, Minnesota
Custer, T. W., Custer, C. M., Eichhorst, B. A., and Warburton, D., 2007, Selenium and metal concentrations in waterbird eggs and chicks at Agassiz National Wildlife Refuge, Minnesota: Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, v. 53, no. 1, p. 103-109.
Exceptionally high cadmium (Cd) and chromium (Cr) concentrations were reported in eggs, feathers, or livers of selected waterbird species nesting at Agassiz National Wildlife Refuge (Agassiz) in 1994. Ten- to 15-day-old Franklin's gull (Larus pipixcan), black-crowned night-heron (Nycticorax nycticorax), and eared grebe (Podiceps nigricollis) chicks were collected in 1998, 1999, and 2001 at Agassiz and analyzed for selenium (Se) and metals including Cd and Cr. Freshly laid eggs were collected in 2001 from Franklin's gull, black-crowned night-heron, eared grebe, and pied-billed grebe (Podilymbus podiceps) nests at Agassiz. Based on a multivariate analysis, the pattern of Se and metal concentrations differed among species for eggs, chick feathers, and chick livers. Low Cd and Cr concentrations were measured in eggs, chick livers, and chick feathers of all four species. Mercury concentrations in black-crowned night-heron and eared grebe eggs collected from Agassiz in 2001 were lower than concentrations reported in 1994. Se and metal concentrations, including Cd and Cr, in waterbird eggs and chicks collected at Agassiz in 1998, 1999, and 2001 were not at toxic levels.
Metals, cadmium, chromium, mercury, selenium, bird eggs, feathers, bird livers, waterbirds, food-chain differences, heavy metals, birds