Heavy-metal concentrations in feathers of cinereous vulture (Aegypius monachus L.) as an endangered species in Turkey

Yamac E., Ozden M., KİRAZLI C., Malkoc S.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND POLLUTION RESEARCH, vol.26, no.1, pp.833-843, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 26 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s11356-018-3649-8
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.833-843
  • Keywords: Aegypius monachus, Anatolia, Heavy metal, Non-invasive method, Feather, Threatened species, LEAD-EXPOSURE, AVIAN FEATHERS, TRACE-ELEMENTS, BLACK VULTURE, MERCURY, POLLUTION, BIRDS, CONTAMINATION, POPULATION, RISK
  • Anadolu University Affiliated: Yes


The aim of this study is to find out the certain heavy-metal levels in the feathers of cinereous vulture (Aegypius monachus L.), which is a threatened species. The feathers of the cinereous vultures were collected from the breeding areas in Sundiken and Turkmenbaba Mountains. To avoid misleading results, vanes and calamuses of the rectrices were evaluated separately in terms of their As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb and Zn contents. ICP-OES was used to analyse the metal levels in feathers which belonged to 43 different individuals. All of the heavy-metal concentrations except for Cu were higher in vanes than in calamuses. The mean levels of Cd (0.254 +/- 1.589g/g d.w. in the calamus and 0.334 +/- 0.156g/g d.w. in the vane), Cr (6.536 +/- 6.378g/g d.w. in the vane), Ni (11.886 +/- 10.891g/g d.w. in the vane) and Pb (5.671 +/- 3.884g/g d.w. in the vane) exceeded the threshold values for the birds. As a result, we recommend further studies to understand the effects of the heavy metals on the population of the species.