Recevied: Apr 27, 2015
Accepted: Nov 14, 2016
Biology and microbiology,
Pollution and environment
The lesser spotted eagle is one of the most numerous species of eagles of Eurasia given high protection priority. However, it belongs to scarsely studied birds from the above area. The livers used in this study were obtained from moribund individuals delivered to the rehabilitation centres or veterinary doctors close to the raptors’ nesting places in Eastern Poland. The aim of the study was to estimate the levels of accumulation of some toxic and essential elements in samples of livers from the lesser spotted eagle and to perform analyses of ecological factors influencing toxic element concentrations. The content of elements in the samples was determined by the method of Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry (ICP-OES). The following accumulation pattern for toxic elements was found: Pb > Cd > Hg. In respect of the concentrations of essential elements, the following pattern was observed: Fe > Mg > Zn > Cu > Mn. It was demonstrated that the elevated concentration of cadmium is usually accompanied by high levels of iron and zinc. Simultaneously, a high concentration of hepatic mercury was accompanied by high levels of selenium and iron as well. In contrast to many other species of European rbirds of prey, the examined livers of lesser spotted eagles showed lead concentrations not indicative of raised exposure to Pb resulting in subclinical toxicity. Concerning Se, the Se concentration exceeded 5.0 mg·kg-1 in only two liver samples. The absence of game in the eagles’ diey during the breeding seasonand also the autumnal migration are the factors which allow lesser spotted eagles to avoid pollution from lead bullets.
Kitowski I., Sujak A., Wiącek D., Komosa A. 2017. Ecological factors helping to avoid the toxic element accumulation in livers of the lesser spotted eagle (Clanga pomarina Brehm) from Eastern Poland. J. Elem., 22(1): 305 - 314. DOI: 10.5601/jelem.2015.20.2.928
Lesser spotted eagle, essential elements, heavy metals, liver