Document Detail

DDT and the decline of free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) at Carlsbad Cavern, New Mexico.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11525497     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
DDT is believed to have caused the population of Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis mexicana) at Carlsbad Cavern to decline severely after 1936. Nevertheless, previous data supporting this hypothesis are limited to a single study from 1974, which indicated that 20% of young free-tails from the cavern may have died of DDE poisoning during their first southward migration. In this study I compared organochlorine residues among samples of free-tails collected in Carlsbad Cavern in 1930, 1956, 1965, 1973, and 1988. Samples of skin cut from dry museum specimens were chemically analyzed, except for the 1973 data, which were derived from analyses of whole bats minus gastrointestinal tracts. Accumulated residue levels of DDT compounds in bats from 1965 and 1956 exceeded those in 1973 bats by approximately 4.8 times and approximately 2.7 times, respectively. This suggests that lethal effects of DDT compounds were substantially greater in the 1950s and 1960s than in the 1970s. Residues in 1988 bats resembled those for 1973 bats. It is concluded that DDT played a major role in this severe population decline. These results can be applied by management personnel in evaluating the present and future status of this population regarding persisting organochlorine insecticides as well as other agricultural chemicals now in use. The case of the Carlsbad colony is discussed relative to the general issue of other bat population declines.
D R Clark
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Archives of environmental contamination and toxicology     Volume:  40     ISSN:  0090-4341     ISO Abbreviation:  Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol.     Publication Date:  2001 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2001-08-29     Completed Date:  2001-09-13     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0357245     Medline TA:  Arch Environ Contam Toxicol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  537-43     Citation Subset:  IM    
Columbia Environmental Research Center, Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station 77843, USA.
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MeSH Terms
DDT / adverse effects*,  analysis
Environmental Exposure
Insecticides / adverse effects*,  analysis
Pesticide Residues / analysis
Population Dynamics
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Insecticides; 0/Pesticide Residues; 50-29-3/DDT

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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