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Persistence in earthworms and potential hazards to birds of soil applied DDT, dieldrin, and heptachlor

Journal of Applied Ecology

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Abstract

(1) DDT, dieldrin, and heptachlor were each applied to separate replicate plots in a hay field at 0.6, 2.2, or 9.0 kg/ha. For 11 yr thereafter, soil and earthworms were analysed for residues. (2) The average ratios of residues in earthworms (dry weight) to residues in soil (dry weight) were: total DDT, 5; dieldrin, 8; and heptachlor epoxide, 10. The average time for the initial residues in soil to be reduced by 50% were: total DDT, 3.2 yr; dieldrin, 5.1 yr; and heptachlor epoxide, 3.2 yr. The corresponding times for residues in earthworms were: total DDT, 3.2 yr; dieldrin, 2.6 yr; and heptachlor epoxide, 3.0 yr. (3) DDE was most persistent, and in plots treated at 9.0 kg/ha its concentration remained constant at about 0.4 ppm in soil and about 7 ppm in earthworms. (4) When applied at 9.0 kg/ha, DDT accumulated in earthworms to concentrations (32 ppm) which laboratory studies have shown to be hazardous to some sensitive bird species. When heptachlor was applied at 2.2 or 9.0 kg/ha, heptachlor epoxide in earthworms reached concentrations (8 ppm) potentially hazardous to woodcock. Dieldrin remained at potentially hazardous concentrations (8 ppm) for 3 yr in plots treated with 2.2 kg/ha and for 11 yr in plots treated with 9.0 kg/ha.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Persistence in earthworms and potential hazards to birds of soil applied DDT, dieldrin, and heptachlor
Series title:
Journal of Applied Ecology
Volume
17
Issue:
2
Year Published:
1980
Language:
English
Contributing office(s):
Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description:
295-307
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Journal of Applied Ecology
First page:
295
Last page:
307
Number of Pages:
13