Pollution Effects Wildlife

Pollution effects not only human lifes but also animals, birds, plants and aquatic species ..they are destroying..

Tina S
Tina S
Jan 2, 2010
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Pollution is one of the primary ways in which humans have caused drastic modifications of wildlife habitat.
Although atmospheric pollution can have natural sources, for example volcanic eruptions, the term are usually used to refer to the gaseous by-products of man-made processes such as energy production, waste incineration, transport, deforestation and agriculture.
There are two types of pollution: direct and indirect pollution. Both direct and indirect pollution affect wildlife. Specific statistics for indirect pollution are more difficult to pinpoint.
Indirect pollution threatens the habitat of animals. Destruction of the ozone, global warms conditions and the infringement on habitat from solid-waste facilities all impact animals.
Direct pollution is more readily studied. In this case, animals and their habitats are significantly impacted by toxic pollutants. The most common are synthetic chemicals, oil, toxic metals and acid rain.
Air Pollution:
The major effects of industrial air pollution on wildlife include direct mortality, debilitating industrial-related injury and disease, physiological stress, anaemia, and bioaccumulation. Some air pollutants have caused a change in the distribution of certain wildlife species.
Air quality is important to the health of fish and wildlife species and their habitats. These natural resources can be harmed by the air pollution emitted by power plants, factories, paper mills, cars, trucks, and other sources. Air pollutants can have serious effects on animals, plants, lakes, streams, soils, and visibility on the millions of acres managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS)
Metals have been reported to affect the circulatory, respiratory, gastrointestinal, and central nervous systems of animals. Often organs such as the kidney, liver, and brain are targeted. Entire populations can be affected as metal contamination can cause changes in birth, growth, and death rates.
The pesticide DDT was banned in the U.S. in 1972 because it caused raptor eggs to thin and break. But residual DDT and other persistent organ chlorine pesticides continue to impact wildlife today. Additionally, DDT is still used in many other countries as the most effective control of malaria-bearing mosquitoes.
Oil Pollution:
Contamination of the oceans because of oil spillage is not rare. It happens all over the world every day, fouling coastlines, killing animals and destroying fisheries.
Oil spills have immediate devastating effects – marine mammals and waterfowl coated with oil drown, are poisoned, or die of hypothermia. Balls of oil that sink to the seafloor can smother organisms. Less obvious effects include tumors and reproductive damage in fishes and crustaceans caused by oil byproducts.
Oil destroys the feathers of seabirds by matting them so they are unable to fly. It breaks down the water proofing and thermal insulation provided by the feathers. It allows the cold water to penetrate the skin. The bird will use up its fat reserves to keep warm but it will eventually get water logged, be unable to feed itself, become dehydrated, cold and will eventually drown and die.

Marine Debris:

Marine Debris is any litter and rubbish that is discarded or abandoned in our marine and coastal environment. Some examples are plastic bottles, plastic bags, balloons and plastic packaging, and commercial netting, aluminum cans, fishing line and glass bottles.
The animal may die and decompose but the killer waste reappears to kill again. Plastic will break down into tiny pieces, the same size as Krill.
Wildlife such as fish, birds and mammals die after ingesting it or become entangled by marine debris. Fishing line, fragments of trawl netting and ropes can cut into their skin, leading to infections of flippers, tails or flukes and result in a slow painful death.
Sea turtles have been killed by plastic bags.

Acid Rain:
Natural rainfall has a pH of around 6.0. This is because of the effect of Carbon dioxide in the air which combines with water to form carbonic acid. The effect of this is however negligible, as it is neutralized in the soil by alkaline material like limestone. However the other emissions cause the pH of the rain water to drop below 5.5 and at this level it is considered to be acid rain. The soil cannot now neutralize the acidity of the rain water. In some places the acidification is so severe that the pH drops to around 4.0. Rare cases have been reported of acid rain having pH of around 2 - 2.5.
The roots are damaged by acidic rainfall, causing the growth of the plant to be stunted, or even in its death. Nutrients present in the soil, are destroyed by the acidity. The acid rain, falling on the plants damages the waxy layer on the leaves and makes the plant vulnerable to diseases. Plant germination and reproduction is also inhibited by the effects of acid rain.
The action of acid rain causes harmful elements like mercury and aluminum to be leached from the soil and rocks and it is then carried into the lakes where aquatic life may be affected. Warning signs have been posted at several lakes, telling about the dangers of eating fish which may have been poisoned by mercury. Every year during the spring thaw, there is a sudden increase in the acidity of the lakes as frozen acid is suddenly deposited in them.
This "Acid Shock" prevents the reproduction of aquatic species, or results in the deaths of the hatchlings. Animals and birds, like waterfowl or beavers, which depended on the water for food sources or as a habitat, also begin to die.

Noise Pollution:
Chronic noise pollution from low-flying aircraft, snowmobiles, motorcycles, and traffic can cause wildlife to abandon habitats, lose reproductive function, and become more vulnerable to predation due to loss of hearing.

Light Pollution:
Light pollution is the popular name for sky glow - a brightening of the night sky caused by the scattering of artificial light by aerosol particles (e.g. water droplets) and dust in the air.
Negative effects on wildlife: scientists now recognize some of the damaging effects of light pollution on flora and fauna.
Light pollution at night disorients bats, insects, and migratory birds.


Sediments eroded during construction or agricultural practices are washed into waterways, damaging fish spawning grounds and smothering bottom dwelling organisms.
These are all about some examples of wildlife pollution.

Keywords: Pollution, Effects Wildlife,pesticides,noise,acid rain,acid shock,sedimentation,marine debris,metal,DDT,animal life,plant, aquatic species,damaging fish,oil pollution,oil spills.

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