During 1975-77, 168 bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) found moribund or dead in 29 states were analyzed for organochlorine pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs); 32 specimens from 13 states were analyzed for polybrominated biphenyls (PBBs). PCBs were present in 166 bald eagle carcasses and DDE was found in 165. TDE and dieldrin were identified in 137 samples, trans-nonachlor in 118, and oxychlordane in 90. Brains of five eagles contained possible lethal levels of dieldrin, and two eagles possibly died of endrin poisoning. Nine eagle livers, analyzed because of suspected lead poisoning, contained high levels of lead. Twenty percent of the eagles died from shooting, the most common cause of death; this cause of death, however, has declined.
Additional Publication Details
Organochlorine pesticide, PCB, and PBB residues and necropsy data for bald eagles from 29 states--1975-77