In summary, as little as 30 parts of ethyl mercury p-toluene sulfonanilide per million (12.5 ppm of Hg) in the diet of adult pheasants was generally fatal within 2 to 3 months of feeding. Ten parts of the compound per million (4.2 ppm of Hg) in the diet reduced egg production 50 to 80 percent and increased embryo mortality in the few eggs laid. Mercury residues in 14 eggs were 0.9 to 3.1 ppm, comparable to those in eggs of pheasants fed methyl mercury dicyandiamide (3), in which hatchability was also reduced. Since similar residues of mercury have been found in eggs of wild pheasants (3) -and several species of aquatic birds (2), we conclude that mercury pollution may be sufficiently high in some areas to affect avian reproduction.
Additional publication details
Ethyl mercury p-toulene sulfonanilide: Lethal and reproductive effects on pheasants