The famous Midway atoll has a large colony of nesting Laysan albatross and also a large number of abandoned structures. Lead paint is chipping off the abandoned World War Two era buildings. Fledglings often ingest the chips, which leads to lead poisoning and a condition called “droop-wing syndrome”. Because of nerve damage from lead poisoning, the fledgling cannot hold its wings against its body. Instead, they droop and scrape against the ground. The fledgling cannot fly and will eventually starve. Fledgling mortality is abnormally high on the islands and droop-wing seems to be more prevalent near abandoned buildings with peeling paint. (Sileo 433)
- Sileo, L. Paint Chip Poisoning of Laysan Albatross At Midway Atoll Journal of Wildlife Diseases 23-3 (1987)
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