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Influence of trophic ecology on the accumulation of dioxins and furans (PCDD/Fs), non-ortho polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in Mediterranean gulls (Larus michahellis and L. audouinii): A three-isotope approach

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Roscales, José L. and Vicente, Alba and Muñoz Arnanz, Juan and Morales, Laura and Abad, Esteban and Aguirre de Miguel, José Ignacio and Jiménez, Begoña (2016) Influence of trophic ecology on the accumulation of dioxins and furans (PCDD/Fs), non-ortho polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in Mediterranean gulls (Larus michahellis and L. audouinii): A three-isotope approach. Environmental Pollution, 212 . pp. 307-315. ISSN 0269-7491

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Official URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0269749116300781



Abstract

The impact of pollution caused by severe anthropogenic pressure in the Mediterranean Sea, an important biodiversity hotspot, requires continuous research efforts. Sources of highly toxic chemicals such as Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) are misunderstood in representative Mediterranean species, which limits our capability to establish proper conservation strategies. In the present study, eggs of Audouin's and yellow-legged gulls (Larus audouinii and L. michahellis) were used to investigate the trophic sources, as measured by δ13C, δ15N, and δ34S, of legacy POPs, in particular, polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and furans (PCDD/Fs) and non-ortho polychlorinated biphenyls (no-PCBs), as well as recently-regulated POPs, e.g., polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Special attention was paid to the usefulness of rarely-explored δ34S ratios in explaining POP exposure in wildlife, and δ34S was the isotopic ratio that best explained POP variations among gulls in most cases, thus demonstrating its usefulness for understanding POP exposure in wildlife. Significant relationships between stable isotope signatures and POP concentrations revealed increasing levels of no-PCBs and low halogenated PCDD/Fs and PBDEs in Mediterranean gulls as the consumption of marine resources increases. In contrast, highly chlorinated and brominated congeners appeared to preferentially accumulate in gulls feeding primarily on refuse from dump sites and terrestrial food webs. The use of suitable dietary tracers in the study of POPs in yellow-legged gulls revealed the importance of dump sites as a source of POPs in Mediterranean seabirds, which has not previously been reported. In contrast, the preferential accumulation through marine food webs of low chlorinated PCCD/Fs and no-PCBs, which show the highest toxic equivalents factors (TEFs), led to a significantly greater toxicological concern in Audouin's as compared to yellow-legged gulls. Audouin's gull exposure to POPs appears primarily related to the pelagic food webs commonly exploited by fisheries, highlighting the need for further research given the potential impact on human consumption.


Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:POPs; Seabirds; Stable isotopes; δ34S; Trophodynamics
Subjects:Medical sciences > Biology > Birds
Medical sciences > Biology > Ecology
ID Code:41408
Deposited On:20 Feb 2017 16:57
Last Modified:10 Dec 2018 15:25

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