Contaminant Exposure and Effects—Terrestrial Vertebrates (CEE-TV) Database Summary Findings for Trust Resources in U.S. Coastal Habitats

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Scientists and natural resource managers often seek information on the effects various environmental stressors on wildlife.To facilitate this activity, we created a database focused on environmental contaminant exposure and adverse effects in wildlife residing in coastal and estuarine habitat.The Contaminant Exposure and Effects-Terrestrial Vertebrates database is searchable and relatively easy to use.

The Challenge: The National Contaminant Biomonitoring Program of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has been the only large-scale effort that has examined contaminant exposure in terrestrial vertebrates in the United States. Halogenated contaminants, metals, and new pollutants continue to pose hazards to wildlife at many geographic scales. To address this hazard, critical data gaps are being identified through retrospective compilation and analysis of ecotoxicological data. (www.pwrc.usgs.gov/contaminants-online)

The Science: Retrospective contaminant exposure and effects data for free-ranging terrestrial vertebrates residing in U.S. estuarine and coastal habitat are identified in published and unpublished literature. Data are compiled into a 118-field database, that includes information on taxonomy, collection date, study location, geographic coordinates, sample matrix, contaminant concentration, biomarker or bioindicator response, and source of information. The CEE-TV database can be searched for temporal and spatial trends in order to identify significant data gaps

The Future: The CEE-TV database contains over 20,600 records describing contaminant exposure or effects in approximately 275,000 individuals representing over 500 species of amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals. The database contains information from 1884 to 2014. Contemporary terrestrial vertebrate ecotoxicological data are lacking in 40% of the coastal watersheds, and about half of the National Wildlife Refuge and National Park units in coastal areas. Ranking schemes have been developed to prioritize Department of the Interior Management units and Important Bird Areas for which sampling and evaluation are most critical.