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Title

Disrupted bone metabolism in contaminant-exposed white storks (Ciconia ciconia) in southwestern Spain

AuthorsSmits, Judit E.G.; Bortolotti, Gary R. ; Baos, Raquel ; Tella, José Luis ; Jovani, Roger ; Hoffmann, Walter E.
KeywordsBone metabolism;
Skeletal deformity
White stork
Mine tailings spill
Aznalcóllar
Issue DateJan-2007
PublisherElsevier
CitationEnvironmental Pollution v. 145, Issue 2, January 2007, 538-544
AbstractIn 1998, the Aznalco´ llar mine tailings dyke in southwestern Spain broke, flooding the Agrio-Guadiamar river system with acid tailings up to the borders of one of the largest breeding colonies of white storks in the western Palearctic, Dehesa de Abajo. Over the following years, a high proportion of nestlings developed leg defects not seen before the spill, prompting this study. Nestlings with deformed legs had significantly lower plasma phosphorous (P) and higher Ca:P ratios than non-deformed cohorts in the first two years, but in the third year, when more, younger birds were studied, plasma P ranged from much higher to much lower in the affected colony compared with reference birds. Coefficients of variation for phosphorous were 19% and 60%, in reference and contaminated colonies, respectively. Storks from the contaminated colony were unable to control P levels and Ca:P ratios within the narrow limits necessary for normal bone development.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/jenvpol.2006.04.032
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/36894
DOI10.1016/jenvpol.2006.04.032
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