Lead shot ingestion in two raptor species from Doñana, Spain

R. Mateo, R. Cadenas, M. Máñez, R. Guitart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


Diurnal raptors inhabiting wetland areas where waterfowl shooting is conducted have many opportunities to ingest lead (Pb) shot pellets when feeding on their prey. Exposure to Pb shot was studied in the Spanish imperial eagle (Aquila adalberti), an endangered species with a world population of about 150 breeding pairs, and in the red kite (Milvus milvus) from Doñana (southwest Spain). Lead exposure was evaluated by the presence of Pb shot in the pellets of both species. Results obtained by this noninvasive method demonstrated Pb shot in 11.0% of Spanish imperial eagle and 5.5% of red kite pellets. When the data of both species were pooled, there was a significant relationship between Pb shot ingestion and consumption of waterfowl during the hunting season. Pb shot found in pellets exhibited signs of erosion, and their weight distribution had peaks at 70, 170, and 240 mg, which could correspond to ammunition used for duck and goose hunting. © 2001 Academic Press.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-10
JournalEcotoxicology and Environmental Safety
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2001


  • Aquila adalberti
  • Guadalquivir Marshes
  • Lead poisoning
  • Milvus milvus
  • Red kite
  • Shot
  • Spanish imperial eagle


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