Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

DDT, DDD, and DDE in birds

December 31, 2011

This chapter summarizes residue levels of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), DDD, and DDE three compounds in birds that are diagnostic for or are associated with mortality and important sublethal effects and suggests improvements in design of contemporary field studies that will result in maximum usefulness in interpreting residue data. Heath et al. first documented eggshell thinning and associated lowered reproductive success of experimental birds on DDE diets. Although there were several studies of eggshell thinning of birds that were given diets containing technical DDT, most did not list residues in eggs, and DDE-not DDT-comprises most of dietary exposure of wild birds with significant eggshell thinning. Although DDE was responsible for most reproductive failure in birds, very high levels of DDT in ring-necked pheasant eggs in California may have caused reproductive problems, such as crippling and mortality of young. Residues in tissues, particularly brain, have proven to be diagnostic of lethality in animals on dietary dosages of DDT, DDD, and DDE in experiments.

Publication Year 2011
Title DDT, DDD, and DDE in birds
DOI 10.1201/b10598-13
Authors Lawrence J. Blus
Publication Type Book Chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Index ID 70224979
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Patuxent Wildlife Research Center