Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1186/s12302-021-00497-9
Licence creative commons licence
Title (Primary) Calibration of the SPEARpesticides bioindicator for cost-effective pesticide monitoring in East African streams
Author Ganatra, A.A.; Kandie, F.J.; Fillinger, U.; McOdimba, F.; Torto, B.; Brack, W.; Liess, M.; Hollert, H.; Becker, J.M.
Source Titel Environmental Sciences Europe
Year 2021
Department WANA; OEKOTOX
Volume 33
Page From art. 58
Language englisch
Topic T9 Healthy Planet
T5 Future Landscapes
Keywords Ecotoxicology; Bio-indicator; Pesticide pollution
Abstract Background Pesticides are washed from agricultural fields into adjacent streams, where even short-term exposure causes long-term ecological damage. Detecting pesticide pollution in streams thus requires the expensive monitoring of peak concentrations during run-off events. Alternatively, exposure and ecological effects can be assessed using the SPEARpesticides bioindicator that quantifies pesticide-related changes in the macroinvertebrate community composition. SPEARpesticides has been developed in Central Europe and validated in other parts of Europe, Australia and South America; here we investigated its performance in East African streams. Results With minimal adaptations of the SPEARpesticdes index, we successfully characterized pesticide pollution in 13 streams located in Western Kenya. The East African SPEARpesticides index correlated well with the overall toxicity of 30 pesticides (maximum toxic unit = maximum environmental vs. median lethal concentration) measured in stream water (R2 = 0.53). Similarly, the SPEARpesticides index correlated with the risk of surface run-off from agricultural fields (as identified based on ground slope in the catchment area and the width of protective riparian strips, R2 = 0.45). Unlike other bioindicators designed to indicate general water pollution, SPEARpesticides was independent of organic pollution and highly specific to pesticides. In 23% of the streams, pesticides exceeded concentrations considered environmentally safe based on European first tiered risk assessment. Conclusions Increasing contamination was associated with considerable changes in the macroinvertebrate community composition. We conclude that pesticides need to be better regulated also in developing countries. SPEARpesticides provides a straightforward and cost-efficient tool for the required monitoring of pesticide exposure in small to medium streams.
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Ganatra, A.A., Kandie, F.J., Fillinger, U., McOdimba, F., Torto, B., Brack, W., Liess, M., Hollert, H., Becker, J.M. (2021):
Calibration of the SPEARpesticides bioindicator for cost-effective pesticide monitoring in East African streams
Environ. Sci. Eur. 33 , art. 58 10.1186/s12302-021-00497-9