Toxicity, survivability, and activity patterns of northern bobwhite quail dosed with the insecticide Terbufos

R A Brewer, L L Carlock, Michael J Hooper, L W Brewer, George Cobb, Ronald Kendall

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10 Scopus citations


The effects of the organophosphorus insecticide terbufos on laboratory reared and wild northern bobwhites (Colinus virginianus) were investigated in laboratory dosing studies and dose-release field trials. Laboratory studies yielded a terbufos LD50 of 24.4 mg/kg-body weight (bw). All mortalities occurred within the first 24 h post-dose. Wild bobwhites were trapped, administered 0, 3, 5.6, or 21 mg/kg-bw terbufos by oral intubation, released at their trapping site, and monitored for 14 d. Mortality, activity, and locational data were recorded. Bobwhites treated with 21 mg/kg-bw terbufos had significantly lower survival (p = 0.04) than control birds, while survival at the lower doses was unaffected. No significant differences (p = 0.06) were detected in physical activity among treatments. The 21-mg/kg-bw dose yields an anticipated 37% mortality (or LD37) when interpolated from the LD50 slope equation. After adjustment for control mortality, the 21-mg/kg-bw dose led to 44% mortality in wild bobwhites. This was a 7% higher mortality than predicted by interpolation from the laboratory generated LD50. These results indicate that there was not a substantial increase in mortality of wild bobwhites compared to laboratory reared bobwhites at nonlethal or lethal, sub-LD50, doses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)750-753
Number of pages4
JournalEnvironmental Toxicology and Chemistry
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1996


  • Counter®
  • Northern bobwhite
  • Organophosphorus insecticide
  • Survival
  • Terbufos


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