School of Earth, Environmental, and Marine Sciences Faculty Publications and Presentations

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  • We observed effects of pesticides exposure on free-swimming behaviors in goldfish.

  • Pesticides profoundly impacting natural swimming patterns.

  • Behavioral analysis showed a dose- and time-dependent, decrease in distance swam.

  • Vertical/horizontal spatial behavioral use both affected under exposure conditions.


The prevalence of pesticides in the aquatic environment continues to increase due to anthropogenic activities and poses a threat to aquatic organisms. Notably, the intensive use of pesticides can cause detrimental effects (i.e., chemical stressors) on animal behavior. The aim of this study was to determine the short-term exposure effects (5-day) of an environmentally relevant pesticide mixture (low- and high-dose: metolachlor 2.4 and 12 μg/L; linuron 2.0 and 10 μg/L; isoproturon 1.2 and 6.0 μg/L; tebucanazole 1.2 and 6.0 μg/L; alconifen 0.8 and 4.0 μg/L; atrazine 0.4 and 2.0 μg/L; pendimethalin; 0.4 and 2.0 μg/L; azinphos-methyl 0.8 and 4.0 μg/L) on fish swimming behaviors. Results indicated that a low dose of pesticide mixture decreased the distance swam in goldfish. Spatial behavior use was also altered during short-term pesticide exposure, with increased time spent in the lowest horizontal region in aquariums in both low- and high-dose exposure groups. In vertical spatial use analysis, all exposure groups showed lowered amounts of time spent in the middle region in aquariums, especially in high-dose exposure groups. Collectively, these data indicate that short-term exposure to pesticide mixture significantly alters free-swimming behavior in teleost species.


Under a Creative Commons license

Publication Title

Journal of Hazardous Materials Advances





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