Analysis of some heavy metals (Cd and Pb) in the Sanlıurfa province using feral pigeon blood samples.
Birds serve as good biomonitors in determining environmental pollution. As for indicators of environmental pollution, we detected blood heavy metal levels in 32 female and 32 male local Feral pigeons in the central districts of Şanlıurfa, located in southeastern Turkey, in one month of each season. The samples were analyzed by coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. Lead (Pb) levels were measured as 233.1 ± 25.7 μg/kg for Haliliye, 101.2 ± 29.7 μg/kg for Karaköprü, 81.3 ± 22.7 μg/kg for Eyyübiye, and 48.1 ± 27.1 μg/kg for Suruç, whereas cadmium (Cd) levels were measured as 30.6 ± 12.6 μg/kg for Haliliye, 35.7 ± 9.2 μg/kg for Karaköprü, 28.1 ± 8.7 μg/kg for Eyyübiye, and 16.8 ± 4.1 μg/kg for Suruç. The results showed that Pb and Cd levels were higher in males. Pb levels were highest in Haliliye, which is a heavy traffic zone, and Cd levels were highest in the Karaköprü where unplanned settlement is observed. Seasonal monitoring demonstrated that Pb levels were highest in spring, and Cd levels were highest in spring and autumn. Conclusively, in this air pollution study considering the central districts of Şanlıurfa, it is suggested to increase the use of public transport, encourage the use of alternative energy resources, to adopt a planned urbanization approach and increase afforestation.