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Arch Environ Contam Toxicol. 2008 Jul;55(1):122-8. Epub 2007 Dec 13.

Heavy metal concentrations in feathers of Korean shorebirds.

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  • 1Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, Kyung Hee University, Yongin, Gyeonggi-do, 446-701, Republic of Korea.

Erratum in

  • Arch Environ Contam Toxicol. 2008 Oct;55(3):546.

Abstract

This study presents concentrations of zinc, manganese, copper, lead, and cadmium in the feather of five shorebird species from Yeongjong Island, Korea in the East Asian-Australian migration flyways. The objectives of this study were to determine levels of heavy metal concentrations in the feathers of shorebirds, to evaluate the pattern of heavy metal concentrations in the feather and the liver, and to examine the correlation between heavy metal concentrations in the feathers and livers. We hypothesized that difference of heavy metal concentrations will show by the breeding ground of shorebirds. Lead concentrations in dunlins (geomean = 14.8 microg/g wet weight) and great knots (20.8 microg/g wet weight) feathers were significantly higher than Terek sandpipers (3.32 microg/g wet weight); other metals were not different among shorebirds. Zinc, lead, and cadmium concentrations in the feather were correlated with the liver concentrations, but manganese and copper concentrations were not. Zinc, manganese, copper, lead, and cadmium concentrations in the feather from this study were within the range of earlier studies for wild birds, but cadmium concentrations in dunlins were higher than other studies. Because lead concentrations in livers and feathers of the Terek sandpiper were lower than in other shorebirds, we suggest that Terek sandpipers were exposed to lower lead concentrations than Kentish plovers, dunlins, and great knots on their breeding ground.

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