Adult male mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) were fed diets supplemented with 0, 10, 20, 40, or 80 g/g selenium in the form of selenomethionine. Mortality in each of these treatments was 0, 10, 25, 95, and 100%, respectively, during a 16-week exposure that started in November. After one week of treatment, body weights were significantly depressed by the 20, 40, and 80-ug/g selenium treatments, but not by 10 :g/g selenium. Four weeks after being returned to an untreated diet, the body weight of birds fed 20 ug/g selenium had increased to the point of being statistically inseparable from the weight of controls. Signs of selenium poisoning in the dead included severe emaciation, mottling of the liver, empty gizzard, and the presence of a yellowish fluid around some organs. Concentrations of selenium in blood were related to dietary treatments, but mortality was not clearly related to a threshold concentration of selenium in blood.
Additional Publication Details
Overwinter survival of mallards fed selenium
Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology