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Accumulation of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin equivalents by double-crested cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus, Pelicaniformes) chicks in the North American Great Lakes

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-18, 16:31 authored by Jones, PD, Giesy, JP, Newstead, JL, Verbrugge, DA, Ludwig, JP, Ludwig, ME, Heidi AumanHeidi Auman, Crawford, R, Tillitt, DE, Kubiak, TJ, Best, DA
Concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and 2,3,7,8-tetrachlordibenzo-p-dioxin equivalents (TCDD-EQ) were determined in eggs and chicks of double-crested cormorants (DCC) which were collected in 1989 from eight locations in the Laurentian Great Lakes. The mean biomagnification factor (BMF) from forage fish to eggs was found to be 31.3. Absolute and relative concentrations as well as rates of accumulation of total concentrations of PCBs and TCDD-EQ were measurable in all of the samples. The concentrations of both PCBs and TCDD-EQs decreased immediately upon hatching of chicks, due to growth dilution. Initial decreases in absolute masses of TCDD-EQ in chicks were also observed, which indicates that there can be significant elimination of these compounds during early development. The initial rates of accumulation by chicks were dependent only on the mass of fish consumed. After the chicks began thermoregulating, the rates of accumulation, expressed as a concentration, normalized to body weight, became greater. Rates of accumulation of both PCBs and TCDD-EQ were correlated with their respective concentrations in forage fish consumed by the chicks. The relative potency, expressed as the ratio of the concentration of TCDD-EQ to that of total PCBs was calculated to determine if there was significant trophic-level enrichment of the TCDD-EQs, relative to total concentrations of PCBs. A significant enrichment was observed at the more and less contaminated locations, but the degree of enrichment was greater at the less contaminated locations (26 vs 72 μg/g).


Publication title

Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety








Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies


Academic Press Inc Elsevier Science

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525 B St, Ste 1900, San Diego, USA, Ca, 92101-4495

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Copyright 1994 Academic Press, Inc.

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