Bats in Germany are riddled with pesticides and toxic pollutants

Tests on 387 bats from five species found that all were exposed to high levels of polychlorinated biphenyls and organochlorine insecticides, legacy pollutants that have long been banned

Life 6 July 2022

A greater mouse-eared bat (Myotis myotis)

A greater mouse-eared bat (Myotis myotis)

Top-Pics TBK/Alamy

Bats across Germany are riddled with residues of pesticides and persistent organic pollutants, according to the largest study to sample such exposure in a European bat population.

Christoph Müller at Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich and his colleagues collected 387 dead insect-eating bats from five species: serotine bats (Eptesicus serotinus), greater mouse-eared bats (Myotis myotis), common noctules (Nyctalus noctule), common pipistrelles (Pipistrellus pipistrellus) and brown long-eared bats (Plecotus auratus). They tested their livers for 209 different compounds.

Of the 28 chemicals found, the most …

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