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Project ID: 2005CT76B

Title: Gonadal Deformities in Connecticut Amphibians

Project Type: Research

Focus Categories: Ecology, Toxic Substances, Surface Water

Keywords: amphibian, chemical contaminants, developmental abnormality, sentinel study

Start Date: 03/01/2005

End Date: 02/28/2006

Federal Funds: $18,401

Non-Federal Matching Funds: $37,637

Congressional District: 3

Principal Investigator:
David Skelly
Yale University


Human development exposes freshwater wetlands to a wide variety of contaminants whose effects are difficult to calibrate. Wildlife sentinel studies offer a new approach to estimating effects of contaminants on environmental health. We propose a state-wide study of amphibians living in wetlands found in urban, suburban, agricultural and undeveloped landscapes. The motivation for our study is recent evidence that wild amphibian populations can suffer extremely high rates of gonadal abnormalities (up to 92% of individuals within a population). High rates of affliction coupled with the severity of effects, including hermaphroditism, have garnered wide attention from the public and from the regulatory community. Existing studies have been conducted in the Midwestern United States. Data from the northeast are lacking. The purpose of this study is to fill this gap and to provide the foundation for future studies focused on characterizing mechanisms underlying observed abnormalities.

Progress/Completion Report PDF

U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
Maintained by: John Schefter
Last Updated: Friday June 3, 2005 11:26 AM
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