Effects of organic persistent toxicants on the cold defence system in Arctic birds

As part of the efforts to find the levels of organochlorides (OC) that cause toxic effects in Arctic birds, the project will quantitatively investigate the effects of OC on the cold defence system in glaucous gulls and kittiwakes. By measuring OC in selected organs these effects will be related to data on biomarkers obtained in other ongoing projects.

The project will study:
a) Effects of OC in food on development of homeothermy in glaucous gull chicks.
b) Effects of a negative energy balance (that causes a redistribution of OC from adipose tissue) on thermoregulation in already contaminated glaucous gulls.
c) Model experiments with total body cooling will be performed at Dept. of Arctic Biology in Tromsø on Kittiwakes to study the effect of selected fractions of polychlorinated biphenyl's (PCBs) on the thermoregulatory control system (an indicator of effects on the central nervous system).