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Accession Number 5001847

Title Toxicity of lead-contaminated sediments to waterfowl

Project Description This study was originally undertaken in 1994 in response to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) case. The studies were litigation sensitive. The

original series of studies involved testing the toxicity of lead-contaminated sediments to waterfowl.

Mining operations along the Coeur dAlene River Basin in Idaho were suspected as the cause of

lead poisoning in waterfowl. The objectives of the original study were to measure the toxicity of

lead-contaminated sediment from the Coeur dAlene River to adult mallards and relate toxicity to

tissue residues of lead. This early work has since been published; the publication is listed in the

Products section. Basically, we found that the consumption of lead-contaminated sediments from

Harrison Slough, in the Coeur dAlene River Basin, did cause toxicity in mallards. Subsequent to

the original work, new funding has been given us to determine whether the addition of phosphoric

acid to lead-contaminated sediments will make the lead less biologically available to waterfowl

that may ingest some of the sediment in the course of feeding. Data collection for this second

phase of our research has been completed, except for lead residues in samples.

Keywords coeur dalene river, lead, mining, natural resource damage assess, sediments, waterfowl,

Principal Gary H Heinz, USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center: gary_heinz@usgs.gov; David J Hoffman,

Investigators USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center: david_hoffman@usgs.gov;

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