Journal article

Completing a worldwide picture: preliminary evidence of lead exposure in a scavenging bird from mainland Australia

Michael T Lohr, Jordan O Hampton, Simon Cherriman, Francesco Busetti, Cheryl Lohr

The Science of The Total Environment | ELSEVIER | Published : 2020

Abstract

Lead toxicity from ammunition has been shown to be a threat to scavenging birds across the globe. Despite decades of research in Europe, North and South America, Asia and Africa, there have been no studies to investigate this phenomenon in Australia despite that continent having many species of scavenging birds and widespread shooting practices. We present preliminary evidence of lead exposure in Australia's largest bird of prey, the wedge-tailed eagles (Aquila audax) through analysis of bone and eggshell samples from south-western Australia. From 11 bone samples, three birds (27%) had lead levels exceeding literature thresholds for elevated levels (>6.75 ppm). From 36 eggshell samples, no s..

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University of Melbourne Researchers