Analysis of persistent organic pollutants and heavy metals in mysticetes from the United Arab Emirates

Author First name, Last name, Institution

Fadi (Hefaiyah Mountain Conservation Centre Yaghmour, Scientific Research Department
, Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates , Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, , Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Fatin Samara, American University of Sharjah
Carlos Alberto Niño (Fundación Internacional para la Naturaleza y la Sustentabilidad Torres, FINS
, Andara, Chetumal, Quintana Roo 77014, Mexico; Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Quintana Roo, División en Desarrollo Sustentable, Blvd. Bahía s/n esq. Ignacio Comonfort, Col. Del Bosque, Chetumal, Quintana Roo 77019, México , Andara, Chetumal, Quintana Roo 77014, Mexico; Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Quintana Roo, División en Desarrollo Sustentable, Blvd. Bahía s/n esq. Ignacio Comonfort, Col. Del Bosque, Chetumal, Quintana Roo 77019, México, , Andara, Chetumal, Quintana Roo 77014, Mexico; Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Quintana Roo, División en Desarrollo Sustentable, Blvd. Bahía s/n esq. Ignacio Comonfort, Col. Del Bosque, Chetumal, Quintana Roo 77019, México
Frances Gulland, University of California, Davis
Jane (Breeding Centre of Endangered Arabian Wildlife Budd, Veterinary Department
, Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates , Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, , Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Martha (Breeding Centre of Endangered Arabian Wildlife Koedooder, Veterinary Department
, Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates , Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, , Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Christian Wilson, Hefaiyah Mountain Conservation Centre, Environment and Protected Areas Authority, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Ada Natoli, UAE Dolphin Project Initiative, Dubai, UAE; Zayed University

Document Type

Article

Source of Publication

Regional Studies in Marine Science

Publication Date

12-1-2023

Abstract

Chemical pollution is a major threat that can increase the mortality and lower the reproductive success of cetaceans. In this study we assess, for the first time, the level of contamination of selected priority pollutants consisting of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and heavy metals in whales found stranded in the United Arab Emirates. The samples included five Bryde’s whales (Balaenoptera edeni) and one humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) from the Arabian Gulf and one blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus) from the Gulf of Oman. None of the 18 OCPs tested for were detected. Of the 20 PCB congeners tested for, only one was detected in two (40%) Bryde’s whales.The concentrations of trace elements and heavy metals were lower than reported in baleen whales from the southern hemisphere. PAHs, the predominant pollutants in this study, were detected in the tissues of all examined specimens. The predominance of low molecular weight PAHs over high molecular weight PAHs suggests that PAH exposure may have been primarily from petrogenic sources. The amputation of the tail fluke in one case and bruising of a second whale suggest trauma and marine debris entanglement may have contributed to death in at least two cases. We observed no evidence of marine debris ingestion when such examinations were possible

ISSN

2352-4855

Publisher

Elsevier BV

Volume

68

First Page

103276

Last Page

103276

Disciplines

Environmental Sciences

Keywords

Mysticetes, Whales, Heavy metals, Persistent Organic Pollutants, Ecotoxicology

Indexed in Scopus

no

Open Access

no

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