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SURROGATE SPECIES IN ASSESSING CONTAMINANT RISK FOR ENDANGERED FISHES
Mayer Jr., F L., M. R. Ellersieck, D. R. Buckler, F. J. Dwyer, AND L. C. Sappington. SURROGATE SPECIES IN ASSESSING CONTAMINANT RISK FOR ENDANGERED FISHES. Presented at Society for Risk Analysis, Seattle, WA, December 2-5, 2001.
Rainbow trout, fathead minnows, and sheepshead minnows were tested as surrogate species to assess contaminant risk for 17 endangered fishes and one toad species. Acute toxicity tests were conducted with carbaryl, copper, 4-nonylphenol, pentachlorophenol, and permethrin in accordance with ASTM guidelines to represent different chemical classes and toxic modes of action. Standard surrogate test fishes were found to be toxicologically representative of endangered ones, often having similar sensitivity to chemicals as endangered species. Interspecies correlation models (Model II least squares regression, both variables being independent and subject to measurement error) indicate that acute toxicity test data for surrogate test organisms can be used with accuracy and precision to predict chemical toxicity to endangered fishes. Correlations were best within a family, decreasing with increasing taxonomic distance. However, rainbow trout was the most useful of all species for acute estimations among more than one family. If the rainbow trout is used as the surrogate species, those risk assessment procedures that protect rainbow trout would likely be protective of most endangered fish species. Additional margins of safety are not supported by our data for endangered fishes in regard to contaminant sensitivity.