Researchers examine contaminants in hunted wildlife

Concerning environmental contaminants, game species are not subject to the same safety testing as commercially marketed livestock. A recent study sampled feral pigs, gray squirrels, and waterfowl from relatively uncontaminated habitats and areas of contamination.

Investigators found that many of the game species from contaminated areas had detectable levels of contaminants. A number of waterfowl tissues were above levels that might cause concern for the health of the birds and humans that consume game; however, the majority of tissue samples analyzed were below levels known to adversely affect wildlife health.

Of special concern are migratory waterfowl that can expose hunters to contaminants thousands of kilometers from point sources.

The study is published in the Journal of Wildlife Management.

More information: Journal of Wildlife Management (2017).

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