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BRI in the News
BRI's work on mercury in songbirds has been in the news recently including an article in National Geographic Online. Pictured here is a Yellow Warbler.

BRI in the News

BRI news stories have appeared in many regional, national, and international news outlets. These stories help promote awareness of our work, but also promote the general issues of conservation biology and the need to continue research in wildlife health and its implications to human health.

BRI's researchers are available to talk to journalists and provide expert information on both their work and the broader topics of their expertise. 

To set up interviews, contact: 

Deborah McKewCommunications Director 

News Archive

Sep 15, 2016

Western North America Mercury Synthesis Featured in Science Daily

Comprehensive study finds widespread mercury contamination across western North America

Biodiversity Research Institute (BRI) announces findings from the Western North America Mercury Synthesis, an effort to assess environmental mercury deposition across the western region of the continent. An international team led by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and co-organized by BRI, recently documented widespread mercury contamination in air, soil, sediment, plants, fish, and wildlife at various levels across this region. They evaluated potential risk from mercury to human, fish, and wildlife heath, and examined resource management activities that influence this risk.

"Mercury is widespread in the environment, and under certain conditions poses a substantial threat to environmental health and natural resource conservation," says Collin Eagles-Smith, Ph.D., USGS ecologist and team lead.

The research team gathered decades of mercury data to examine patterns of mercury and methylmercury in numerous components of the western landscape. The results show where mercury occurs in western North America, how it moves through the environment, and the processes that influence its movement and transfer to aquatic food chains.

"This integrated effort provides critical information on mercury pathways to humans and wildlife that government regulators, lawmakers, and the public can use to make decisions," says David Evers, Ph.D., executive director and chief scientist of Biodiversity Research Institute and co-organizer of the project. "The Western mercury synthesis builds upon our Northeastern and Great Lakes regional efforts through which we collected and analyzed environmental mercury data that were often separated by sample type." The initiative for the western region of the continent continues BRI's efforts to assess environmental mercury deposition across North America in the Institute's series of studies called Mercury Connections.

Photo Credits: Yellow Warbler © Ken Archer.
Biodiversity Research Institute