In December 1973, eight ruddy ducks killed in an oil spill on the Delaware River were collected to be analyzed for residues of environmental pollutants. Whole carcasses were analyzed for organochlorine pesticides and livers were examined for lead, cadmium, and mercury. Residues of polychlorinated biphenyls and DDT and/or its metabolites were present in all carcasses. Dieldrin and hexachlorobenzene were present in seven of the eight samples. All livers contained detectable levels of lead, cadmium, and mercury.
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Residues of organochlorines and heavy metals in ruddy ducks from the Delaware River, 1973