The herbicide atrazine (2chloro4ethylamino6isopropylamino1,3,5triazine) is the most heavily used agricultural pesticide in North America. Domestically, more than 50 million kg are applied yearly to more than 25 million ha, primarily to control weeds in corn and sorghum crops. Atrazine residues have been detected in runoff from treated fields in lakes and streams at phytotoxic levels. Birds and mammals were comparatively resistant, with a low probability for atrazine accumulation and retention. Data are lacking on indirect effects of atrazine on wildlife granivores and insectivores. Direct effects to aquatic fauna occur at 94 micrograms/l, and higher; however, indirect effects may occur at 20 micrograms/l, and higher, partly through reduction of the food supply of herbivores, and partly through loss of macrophyte habitat. Ecological and toxicological aspects of atrazine in the environment are briefly reviewed, with special emphasis on fishery and wildlife resources.
Additional Publication Details
Atrazine Hazards to Fish, Wildlife, and Invertebrates: A Synoptic Review
Contaminant Hazard Reviews
Report 18 ; Biological Report 85(1.18)
U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service