A study was conducted to determine cadmium, chromium and lead concentrations in liver and brain of 52 little owls (Athene noctua) from two provinces of Emilia Romagna region, with the aim of furnishing indirect information concerning contamination of their habitat, also considering possible environmental dispersion of the metals. Metal analysis was performed by atomic absorption spectrophotometry with graphite furnace. Variance analysis with sampling area, gender and age shows that no statistical difference was found for gender, while a significant difference (P < 0.05) was found for cadmium and lead, but not for chromium, when sampling areas and age were of concern. For all metals highest mean concentrations were found in liver (170 ppb for cadmium, 297 ppb for chromium and 312 ppb for lead). These levels can be considered as indicative of chronic exposure to low and "background" amounts of pollutants and they are of no toxicological concern, as they are always well below the toxic thresholds defined for each metal. The present study can be considered as a starting point for further analyses, aimed to the definition of any possible subtle effect (e.g. effects on enzymes activity) and of any possible correlation between levels of pollutants and appearance of possible adverse effects. It also furnished useful data for diagnostic cases and potentially for monitoring local contamination. © 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

Cadmium, chromium and lead contamination of Athene noctua, the little owl, of Bologna and Parma, Italy

Zaccaroni A.;Castellani G.;Stracciari G. L.
2003

Abstract

A study was conducted to determine cadmium, chromium and lead concentrations in liver and brain of 52 little owls (Athene noctua) from two provinces of Emilia Romagna region, with the aim of furnishing indirect information concerning contamination of their habitat, also considering possible environmental dispersion of the metals. Metal analysis was performed by atomic absorption spectrophotometry with graphite furnace. Variance analysis with sampling area, gender and age shows that no statistical difference was found for gender, while a significant difference (P < 0.05) was found for cadmium and lead, but not for chromium, when sampling areas and age were of concern. For all metals highest mean concentrations were found in liver (170 ppb for cadmium, 297 ppb for chromium and 312 ppb for lead). These levels can be considered as indicative of chronic exposure to low and "background" amounts of pollutants and they are of no toxicological concern, as they are always well below the toxic thresholds defined for each metal. The present study can be considered as a starting point for further analyses, aimed to the definition of any possible subtle effect (e.g. effects on enzymes activity) and of any possible correlation between levels of pollutants and appearance of possible adverse effects. It also furnished useful data for diagnostic cases and potentially for monitoring local contamination. © 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
Zaccaroni A.; Amorena M.; Naso B.; Castellani G.; Lucisano A.; Stracciari G.L.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/881316
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