Harmful flame retardants appear in peregrine falcon eggs

Some of the chemicals were phased out years ago

Researchers found that peregrine falcons across North America are heavily contaminated with harmful flame retardants—including some that have been phased out for years.

In a study published in Environmental Science & Technology, researchers found that the chemicals, which are added to furniture, electronics and other everyday products to meet flammability standards, appeared in peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) eggs collected from multiple locations in the U.S. and Canada.

The chemicals can migrate out of the products and end up in wildlife and people.

“Flame retardants phased out a decade ago are still accumulating in these birds and into their eggs, which indicates that the threats of these chemicals to wildlife and people can far outlast their production,” said lead Da Chen, a scientist at Jinan University.

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Header Image: Credit: Tisha Mukherjee