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Dangerous delicacy: contaminated sea turtle eggs pose a potential health threat.

Tibbetts J - Environ. Health Perspect. (2009)

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The eggs of the green turtle (Chelonia mydas) and other sea turtle species are a popular food in areas such as Peninsular Malaysia—so popular, in fact, that nesting populations in the region have declined by more than 80% since the 1950s, largely because of their eggs being collected for human consumption... Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and heavy metals have been reported in the eggs of a number of C. mydas populations... Now a team of Australian and Malaysian scientists reports that the concentrations of POPs found in C. mydas eggs from markets in Peninsular Malaysia could pose a considerable threat to human health... In August 2006, the investigators surveyed 33 markets along 730 miles of coastal Peninsular Malaysia... C. mydas eggs were available in 9 of these 33 markets... Eggs were also analyzed for zinc, copper, cobalt, selenium, arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury... For each metal and category of POP, the authors calculated the percentage of the acceptable daily intake (ADI) found in the eggs, providing an estimate of potential human health risks involved in consuming the eggs... The concentrations of POPs and metals measured were generally lower than those reported elsewhere for loggerhead sea turtle (C. caretta) eggs... The authors note that the rate of C. mydas egg consumption in Peninsular Malaysia was not investigated in the present study, nor has it been well quantified... However, there is a cultural perception in this area that sea turtle eggs have medicinal qualities... The authors write that a public education campaign could highlight the health consequences of consuming contaminated eggs... This in turn could reduce egg collection pressure and hence potentially contribute to the recovery of the C. mydas populations in this region.

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C. mydas eggs for sale in Kuala Terengganu, Penisular Malaysia
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f1-ehp-117-a407b: C. mydas eggs for sale in Kuala Terengganu, Penisular Malaysia


Dangerous delicacy: contaminated sea turtle eggs pose a potential health threat.

Tibbetts J - Environ. Health Perspect. (2009)

C. mydas eggs for sale in Kuala Terengganu, Penisular Malaysia
© Copyright Policy - public-domain
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2737046&req=5

f1-ehp-117-a407b: C. mydas eggs for sale in Kuala Terengganu, Penisular Malaysia

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED EXCERPT
Please rate it.

The eggs of the green turtle (Chelonia mydas) and other sea turtle species are a popular food in areas such as Peninsular Malaysia—so popular, in fact, that nesting populations in the region have declined by more than 80% since the 1950s, largely because of their eggs being collected for human consumption... Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and heavy metals have been reported in the eggs of a number of C. mydas populations... Now a team of Australian and Malaysian scientists reports that the concentrations of POPs found in C. mydas eggs from markets in Peninsular Malaysia could pose a considerable threat to human health... In August 2006, the investigators surveyed 33 markets along 730 miles of coastal Peninsular Malaysia... C. mydas eggs were available in 9 of these 33 markets... Eggs were also analyzed for zinc, copper, cobalt, selenium, arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury... For each metal and category of POP, the authors calculated the percentage of the acceptable daily intake (ADI) found in the eggs, providing an estimate of potential human health risks involved in consuming the eggs... The concentrations of POPs and metals measured were generally lower than those reported elsewhere for loggerhead sea turtle (C. caretta) eggs... The authors note that the rate of C. mydas egg consumption in Peninsular Malaysia was not investigated in the present study, nor has it been well quantified... However, there is a cultural perception in this area that sea turtle eggs have medicinal qualities... The authors write that a public education campaign could highlight the health consequences of consuming contaminated eggs... This in turn could reduce egg collection pressure and hence potentially contribute to the recovery of the C. mydas populations in this region.

Show MeSH