Northwest Fisheries Science Center

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Document Type: Journal Article
Center: NWFSC
Document ID: 7476
Title: Persistent organic pollutants in forage fish prey of rhinoceros auklets breeding in Puget Sound and the northern California Current
Author: T. P. Good, Scott F. Pearson, Peter J. Hodum, Daryle Boyd, B. F. Anulacion, G. M. Ylitalo
Publication Year: 2014
Journal: Marine Pollution Bulletin
Volume: 86
Pages: 367-378
DOI: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2014.06.042
Keywords: rhinoceros auklet,forage fish,salmonids,Persistent Organic Pollutants,PCBs

Organochlorine contaminants in upper trophic-level consumers inhabiting Puget Sound are consistently higher than in those consumers inhabiting other west coast locations. We analyzed persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in prey obtained from rhinoceros auklets on Protection Island (Puget Sound), Tatoosh Island (WA coast), and Destruction Island (WA coast). We measured levels of persistent organic pollutants in the six most common fish prey delivered to auklet chicks.  Overall, concentrations of PCBs, DDTs, and PBDEs in fish from Puget Sound were 2-4 times more contaminated and had similar contaminant profiles compared to fish from the outer coast.  Elevated PCB and PBDE concentrations in Chinook salmon from the outer coast likely reflected Columbia River influences. Calculating contaminant loads for auklet nestlings magnified differences observed between inland and outer coast fish prey. Monitoring of breeding auklets, their prey and other resident marine birds is needed to assess biomagnification impacts in the Puget Sound marine ecosystem.

Theme: Ecosystem approach to improve management of marine resources
Foci: Characterize ecological interactions (e.g. predation, competition, parasitism, disease, etc.) within and among species.
Assess ecosystem status and trends.