The US Environmental Protection Agency conducts risk assessments of insecticide applications to wild birds using a model that is limited to the dietary route of exposure. However, free-flying birds are also exposed to insecticides via the inhalation and dermal routes. We measured azinphos-methyl residues on the skin plus feathers and the feet of brown-headed cowbirds (Molothrus ater) in order to quantify dermal exposure to songbirds that entered and inhabited an apple (Malus x domestica) orchard following an insecticide application. Exposure to azinphos-methyl was measured by sampling birds from an aviary that was built around an apple tree. Birds sampled at 36 h and 7-day post-application were placed in the aviary within 1 h after the application whereas birds exposed for 3 days were released into the aviary 4-day post-application. Residues on vegetation and soil were also measured. Azinphos-methyl residues were detected from the skin plus feathers and the feet from all exposure periods. Our results underscore the importance of incorporating dermal exposure into avian pesticide risk assessments.
|Title||Dermal insecticide residues from birds inhabiting an orchard|
|Authors||N.B. Vyas, J. W. Spann, C.S. Hulse, S. Gentry, S.L. Borges|
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Series Title||Environmental Monitoring and Assessment|
|Record Source||USGS Publications Warehouse|
|USGS Organization||Patuxent Wildlife Research Center|