Team to study eels' disappearance

Jan 01, 2008

An environmental scientist at Queen's University in Canada will lead a study of whether chemical pollution is killing American eels in Lake Ontario.

Biology Professor Peter Hodson and his international team will examine the mystery of the vanishing Lake Ontario population of American eels, a slimy, snake-like fish considered a dining delicacy, Science Daily reported. The eel has been declared a "species of concern" under Canada's Species at Risk Act.

"A prime suspect in the case of the missing fish is the accumulation of toxic chemicals by the parent eels as they feed, grow and mature in polluted freshwater lakes and streams," Hodson said. "Our task will be to determine whether female eels transfer sufficient chemicals to their offspring to cause their death before reaching Lake Ontario."

The team hopes to learn whether chemicals played a role in the eel's decline, and if some lakes and rivers are better suited for restocking than others, Hodson said. In addition, the team will examine which chemicals are the "bad actors" and whether eels are potentially hazardous to human consumers.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: Faster melon breeding thanks to smart combination of techniques

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Researchers marvel at world's deepest sea vents

Feb 27, 2013

Researchers steering a remote-controlled submarine around the world's deepest known hydrothermal vents have collected numerous samples from sunless depths of the Caribbean Sea where blazing hot, mineral-rich ...

Recommended for you

Starving honey bees lose self-control

28 minutes ago

A study in the journal of the Royal Society Biology Letters has found that starving bees lose their self-control and act impulsively, choosing small immediate rewards over waiting for larger rewards.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.