Temporal dynamics of circulating persistent organic pollutants in a fasting seabird under different environmental conditions.

Environmental science & technology

PubMedID: 22938172

Bustnes JO, Moe B, Hanssen SA, Herzke D, Fenstad AA, Nordstad T, Borgå K, Gabrielsen GW. Temporal dynamics of circulating persistent organic pollutants in a fasting seabird under different environmental conditions. Environ Sci Technol. 2012;46(18):10287-94.
Temporal dynamics of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) were examined in fasting common eider (Somateria mollissima) females in one subarctic (68° N; over 5 years) and one high arctic colony (78° N; 3 years). Blood concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB)-153; 1-dichloro-2,2-bis (p-chlorophenyl) ethylene (p,p'-DDE), and hexachlorobenzene (HCB) were measured twice each season in eider females (total n = 162) during incubation (at day 5 and day 20). The mean wet weight concentrations of PCB-153 were ~3-5 times higher in the subarctic colony, whereas p,p'-DDE and HCB concentrations tended to be higher in high arctic than in subarctic eiders late in the incubation period. All POPs increased during incubation fast, but the relative increase in mean concentration varied more among years in high arctic than in subarctic eiders. In the high arctic, both lipid-metabolism and the increase in circulating POP concentrations were highest in the year when the mean ambient temperature was lowest. Moreover, females with low body condition and high lipid metabolism (body mass loss) had stronger increase in circulating concentrations of p,p'-DDE and HCB; the effect size being within the same order of magnitude in the two colonies. Hence, since eiders at high latitudes metabolized relatively more lipids, they experienced higher exposure of p,p'-DDE and HCB over the incubation period than birds inhabiting the more benign subarctic region.