Populations of Laysan albatross face severe declines due to widespread lead poisoning of chicks unless comprehensive cleanup measures gain momentum, according to a recent study.
“Lead poisoning could be killing up to 10,000 chicks per year, and it”s affecting the long-term survival of Laysan albatross,” said Finkelstein, who led a study of the effects of lead poisoning on long-term population stability in the albatross.
The most visible symptom of lead poisoning in chicks, called “droopwing,” is an inability to lift their wings as a result of the toxic effects of lead on the nervous system. Chicks with droopwing are never able to fly and eventually die from starvation or complications of lead poisoning.
The largest threat to Laysan albatross populations, however, isn’t lead poisoning but the long-line fishing industry…Santa Cruz, CA. Read Full Article by Daniel Strain