Dunlins Caldris alpina , and black-bellied plovers, Pluvialis squatarola , were collected in Washington and California during the winter of 1984-85; long-billed dowitchers, Limnodromus scolopaceus , were collected in California. Pooled breast muscles were analyzed for organochlorines and pooled livers for mercury and selenium. DDE was detected in all eight dunlin, three of five dowitcher, and two of nine plover muscle pools. Estimated DDE concentrations in dunlin carcasses at two sites in California were greater than 3 ppm wet wt, a dietary concentration associated with eggshell thinning and decreased reproductive success in raptors. Detectable concentrations of mercury and selenium were found in all liver pools.
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Organochlorines, mercury, and selenium in wintering shorebirds from Washington and California