Publication
Title
Measuring environmental stress in East Greenland polar bears, 1892-1927 and 1988-2009 : what does hair cortisol tell us?
Author
Abstract
Hair sampled from 96 East Greenland polar bears (Ursus maritimus) over the periods 18921927 and 19882009 was analyzed for cortisol as a proxy to investigate temporal patterns of environmental stress. Cortisol concentration was independent of sex and age, and was found at significantly higher (p < 0.001) concentrations in historical hair samples (18921927; n = 8) relative to recent ones (19882009; n = 88). In addition, there was a linear time trend in cortisol concentration of the recent samples (p < 0.01), with an annual decrease of 2.7%. The recent hair samples were also analyzed for major bioaccumulative, persistent organic pollutants (POPs). There were no obvious POP related time trends or correlations between hair cortisol and hair POP concentrations. Thus, polar bear hair appears to be a relatively poor indicator of the animal's general POP load in adipose tissue. However, further investigations are warranted to explore the reasons for the temporal decrease found in the bears' hair cortisol levels.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Environment international. - Oxford
Publication
Oxford : 2012
ISSN
0160-4120
Volume/pages
45(2012), p. 15-21
ISI
000305728700003
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (publisher's version - intranet only)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identification
Creation 08.05.2012
Last edited 04.08.2017
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