The Repercussions of a Growing Society on Fish

Written by on January 26, 2015 in Fish, Other News

Editor’s Note — This article is part of our new Undergraduate Research Series. You can read more about it here.

By Kenneth Berkle, Bridget Fallis and Megan Maloney

Paper and pulp mill effluents have become a larger problem as the paper industry has become a greater need in society. For more than 25 years, researchers have studied paper mill pollution and data from around the world was gathered to discuss the possible effects of paper mill effluents on marine organisms, especially fish.

Studies of white suckerfish revealed that fish exposed to bleached mill effluents experienced decreases in circulation and gonadal production of testosterone. Photo credit: Brian Gratwicke via Wikimedia Commons.

Studies of white suckerfish revealed that fish exposed to bleached mill effluents experienced decreases in circulation and gonadal production of testosterone. Photo credit: Brian Gratwicke via Wikimedia Commons.

The effluences can affect the fish reproduction in multiple ways, with most notable and consistent responses including decreased gonad size, decreased production and/or levels of gonadal sex steroids, hormone-receptor interactions, altered expression of secondary sex characteristics, and decreased egg production. Fish were also affected in certain internal organs, such as the spleen and kidney. Finally, outer organs, including fin appendages, had erosion that was researched back to the effects of paper and pulp mill effluent.

All of these subjects are discussed in Toxic Effects of Paper Mill Discharge: The Repercussions of a Growing Society on Fish.

Copyright © 2015 by Marine Science Today, a publication of Marine Science Today LLC.

About the Author

About the Author: Emily Tripp is the Publisher and Editor of MarineScienceToday.com. She holds marine science and biology degrees from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a Master of Advanced Studies degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. When she's not writing about marine science, she's probably running around outside or playing with her dog. .

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