The article “Can Ingestion of Lead Shot and Poisons Change Population Trends of Three European Birds: Grey Partridge, Common Buzzard, and Red Kite?” has been published on the scientific magazine PlusOne
PlusOne is a peer-reviewed scientific magazine published by the Public Library of Science, a non-profit open access scientific publisher based in San Francisco, California, and in Cambridge, England.
The study is the result of an extensive research carried out on a wide range of animals in occasion of the drafting of the Lead REACH dossier submitted to ECHA in 2010. The data were subsequently submitted to an in-depth analysis and integrated by experts of the Arcadis, a US company specialised in the field, in relation to three of the most significant species of terrestrial birds present in Europe.
The population models used for conducting the study are aimed to consider the “reasonable worst-case scenarios”, and the effects of ingestion of lead shots by birds has been studied at the population as well as the individual scale.
The text published is the result of a long and in-depth debate between the Arcadis experts and the reviewers of the Scientific Committee of the magazine.
The synthesis of the study can be summarized as follow:
Lead shots can cause poisoning of individual birds,
but it has no significant impact on the population level
Accidents, trauma, starvation, disease and bait poison are emerging as the most significant causes impacting the birds life trend. In particular, the ingestion of poisoned bait appears particularly relevant among the mortality causes and in addition induces sub-lethal reproductive impairment.
Link to the study
The complete study can be found online by clicking here.