Organochlorine pesticides associated with ocular, nasal, or otic infection in the eastern box turtle (Terrapene carolina carolina)

J Zoo Wildl Med. 1997 Mar;28(1):97-100.


From May 1987 to September 1994, 19 eastern box turtles (Terrapene carolina carolina) originating from scattered locations on Long Island, New York (USA) were presented with one or more of the following signs: listlessness, ocular and nasal discharge, conjunctivitis, blepharitis, and otitis media. Numerous species of bacteria and yeast were isolated by aerobic culture. Histopathologic findings confirmed chronic active bacterial infections. Toxicologic analyses of livers revealed elevated concentrations of chlordane metabolites in two diseased turtles. A third turtle liver contained residues of endosulfan sulfate. Immunosuppressive effects of low-level exposure to organochlorines, including chlordane and endosulfan, could be involved in the pathogenesis of the observed infections.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Animals, Wild*
  • Environmental Exposure
  • Female
  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated*
  • Insecticides / analysis
  • Insecticides / poisoning*
  • Liver / chemistry
  • Male
  • New York
  • Turtles*


  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated
  • Insecticides