A Florida study found that 126 species of fish were contaminated with a cocktail of pharmaceuticals, including blood pressure medications, antidepressants, antibiotics and painkillers.
Researchers who have found high levels of pharmaceuticals in the blood and tissues of bony fish believe that pollution may be contributing to the decline of not only bony fish, but also more than 125 other species that bony fish feed on.
The scientists also said their findings raise concerns about Florida’s commercial fisheries and the health of people who eat the fish.
Read the full research document here:
Researchers analyzed 93 South Florida bonefish for 104 commonly prescribed pharmaceuticals.
Pharmaceuticals were detected in bonefish in all locations sampled, from Biscayne Bay to west of Key West, in both urban and remote areas.
All bonefish contained pharmaceuticals. An average of 7 pharmaceuticals were detected per bonefish. One fish contained 17 pharmaceuticals.
A total of 58 pharmaceuticals were detected in bonefish.
The most commonly detected pharmaceuticals were: - Blood pressure medications - Antidepressants - Prostate medications - Antibiotics - Pain relievers
The list also includes heart medications, antihistamines, antifungal and stomach medications, and opioids.
Heart medications, antihistamines, and antidepressants lead exceedances.
Exposure to pharmaceuticals by bonefish may occur by inhalation (via water/sediment) or through food.
Pharmaceuticals were present in all prey tested and contain the same types of pharmaceuticals as detected in bonefish.