Organochlorine (OC) residues were recently detected in nonviable Morelet's crocodile (Crocodylus moreletii) eggs from northern Belize. To further the assessment of contaminant exposure in Belizean crocodiles, nonviable Morelet's crocodile eggs (n = 11) from southern Belize and American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) eggs (n = 12) from the coastal zones of Belize were screened for 20 OCs. Results indicated p,p-DDE to be the most prevalent OC (96% occurrence) in eggs examined, with concentrations ranging from 5 to 372 ng/g. These concentrations are similar to those observed in crocodile eggs (10-180 ng/g) from northern Belize. A general trend toward higher DDE concentrations in Morelet's crocodile eggs (mean = 103 ppb) compared with American crocodile eggs (mean = 31 ppb) was observed. However, this trend may be due to site-specific contamination rather than differences in interspecific susceptibility to chemical exposure. Other OCs detected in crocodile eggs included the parent compound, p,p-DDT, and its metabolite, p,p-DDD.
- Crocodile eggs
- Organochlorine residues