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Reproduction of mallards following overwinter exposure to selenium

January 1, 1993

Forty pairs of mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) were fed 15 ppm selenium as selenomethionine for about 21 weeks during winter. Twenty pairs served as controls. At the end of 21 weeks, which coincided with the onset of the reproductive season, selenium treatment was ended. Four birds died while on selenium treatment. Treated females lost weight, and their egg-laying was delayed. Hatching success of some of the first eggs laid by selenium-treated females was lower than that of controls, and a few of these early eggs contained deformed embryos, but, after a period of about two weeks off the selenium-treated diet, reproductive success returned to a level comparable with that of controls. The return to normal reproductive success was the result of a corresponding decrease in selenium concentrations in eggs once selenium treatment ended.

Publication Year 1993
Title Reproduction of mallards following overwinter exposure to selenium
DOI 10.1016/0269-7491(93)90075-Y
Authors G. H. Heinz, M. A. Fitzgerald
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Environmental Pollution
Index ID 5222776
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Patuxent Wildlife Research Center