Hawaii, Lead Paint Poisoning Thousands of Midway Albatrosses

This is a Laysan albatross video.

From Wildlife Extra:


Lead Paint Poisoning Thousands of Albatrosses

Government Funds Not Available for Cleanup on Midway Atoll

December 2006. Lead poisoning is killing thousands of Laysan Albatrosses every year on Midway Atoll, part of the recently created North-western Hawaiian Islands Marine National Monument.

The Laysan albatross, thousands of which are now nesting on Midway, is globally listed as vulnerable to extinction by the World Conservation Union.

‘Laysan chicks raised in nests close to buildings left behind by the Navy are ingesting lead-based paint chips.

This is causing very high lead concentrations in their blood, leading to severe neurological disorders, and eventual death,’ said George Fenwick, President of American Bird Conservancy (ABC).

‘Federal funds are urgently needed to cleanup this toxic mess to protect the Laysan Albatross as well as future visitors to the new Marine National Monument.’

Scientific studies have shown that Laysan Albatross chicks are eating lead-based paint chips peeling off of 95 aging buildings on the island, and that as many as 10,000 chicks (5% of hatched chicks) may die from exposure to lead-based paint.

So, as bad as on Vieques island near Puerto Rico.

But … well, according to the Bush administration, lead is supposed to be not poisonous

And there is no climate change

And the Iraq war is a cakewalk

And pigs fly …

And Midway albatrosses do not fly …

Well, if Bush ‘stays the course‘ on them, then they may soon stop flying.

Hawaii bird habitats threatened: here.

Pollution harms North Pacific albatrosses: here.

16 thoughts on “Hawaii, Lead Paint Poisoning Thousands of Midway Albatrosses

  1. I was out there in 1996 just when the Navy was turning it over to the USFW. I trained the laborers out there to do lead based paint abatement. At that time there were LOTS of poisonned birds than there are there today. Most of the LBP was abated. So this is OLD news, and the effect is better by orders of magnitude than it was before.

    “Scientific studies have shown that Laysan Albatross chicks are eating lead-based paint chips peeling off of 95 aging buildings on the island, and that as many as 10,000 chicks (5% of hatched chicks) may die from exposure to lead-based paint.”

    50% of the hatch does not see the first year end from natural causes!!! The Laysan’s are not the “Endangered Species” out there. IT is another variety of Species of Albatross, that has something like a turkey beard on the back of it’s head. There were less than 200 nesting pairs when I was out there. But the Laysan Albatross, there is something like 12.5 million that come to that Island to reproduce. So 10,000 lead poisonned birds is nothing to the level of population, and is SIGNIFICANTLY lower than the natural death rate by orders of magnitude. Most of the lead is cleaned up, and 100,000 of LBP poisonned birds is now less than 10,000. What is the point here other than Hysterics and bas the opposing political party??

    Environmentalism and science governed and directed by political agenda is junk and not good for our society.


  2. Hi ASBESTOS, you correctly say that ‘science governed and directed by political agenda is junk’. Such pseudo-science is practiced now by the Bush administration and corporations like Exxon. Independent scientific organizations like the Royal Society in Britain and the Union of Concerned Scientists in the USA correctly oppose that junk science.

    I would certainly not agree that “environmentalism is junk”. Wildlife Extra, the source for this blog entry, bases itself solidly on facts. It is definitely NOT “old news” as it is from their most recent issue.

    I would strongly advice you to, before you comment on blogs, to learn the English language (probably your native language, though not mine) first. Like: it is “poisoned birds”; not “poisonned birds”. You also write “bas” while probably meaning “bash”,

    12.5 million Laysan albatrosses?? Please, stick to reality. The US government says, here, “about 387,854 breeding pairs of Laysan Albatross nested on all three islands of Midway Atoll (Sand: 182,574; Eastern: 203,871; and Spit: 1,409).” [UPDATE: that quote is no longer on that government web page, but it is still here.]

    According to Birdweb:

    Despite their recovery and range expansion, there remain threats to the Laysan Albatross population. These birds are prone to being caught in fishing nets and on hooks, and in 1990 the estimated loss to driftnets was over 17,500 birds, almost one percent of the population. A species that lays only one egg each year and doesn’t begin to breed until it is 8 or 9 years old is slow to recover from increased mortality.

    Even one bird dying from poisoning is one too much.


  3. DuPont guilty of wanton, willful, reckless conduct
    Posted by: “Jack” miscStonecutter@earthlink.net bongo_fury2004
    Fri Oct 19, 2007 10:42 pm (PST)

    DuPont guilty of wanton, willful, reckless conduct

    Company ordered to pay nearly $200M over
    zinc waste site in Harrison County

    By The Associated Press
    October 20, 2007

    CLARKSBURG WV — DuPont was convicted Friday of wanton, willful and
    reckless conduct, and ordered to pay $196.2 million in punitive damages
    for its actions at a former zinc-smelting plant, where residents claimed
    the chemical giant had lied to them for decades about health threats
    from pollution.

    When combined with previous verdicts in earlier phases of the same
    trial, the Harrison County jury awards against DuPont now total nearly
    $400 million.

    Full story at:


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