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Veterinary pharmaceutical contamination in mixed land use watersheds: from agricultural headwater to water monitoring watershed

Abstract : Veterinary pharmaceuticals, widely used in intensive livestock production, may contaminate surface waters. Identifying their sources and pathways in watersheds is difficult because i) most veterinary pharmaceuticals are used in human medicine as well and ii) septic or sewer wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) can release pharmaceuticals into surface water, even in agricultural headwater watersheds. This study aimed to analyze the spatiotemporal variability of animal-specific, mixed-use, and human-specific pharmaceuticals, from agricultural headwaters with intensive livestock production and a WWTP to a watershed used for Water Framework Directive monitoring. Grab sampling was performed during one hydrological year upstream and downstream from a WWTP and at three dates in seven nested watersheds with areas of 1.9-84.1km2. Twenty pharmaceuticals were analyzed. Animal-specific pharmaceuticals were detected at all sampling dates upstream and downstream from the WWTP and at concentrations higher than those of human-specific pharmaceuticals. The predominance of animal-specific and mixed-use pharmaceuticals vs. human-specific pharmaceuticals observed at these sampling points was confirmed at the other sampling points. Animal-specific pharmaceuticals were detected mainly during runoff events and periods of manure spreading. A large percentage of mixed-use pharmaceuticals could come from animal sources, but it was difficult to determine. Mixed-use and human-specific pharmaceuticals predominated in the largest watersheds when runoff decreased. In areas of intensive livestock production, mitigation actions should focus on agricultural headwater watersheds to decrease the number of pathways and the transfer volume of veterinary pharmaceuticals, which can be the main contaminants
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Submitted on : Wednesday, August 16, 2017 - 1:54:10 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, May 11, 2022 - 3:20:03 AM

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Anne Jaffrézic, Emilie Jardé, A. Soulier, Lucie Carrera, Eric Marengue, et al.. Veterinary pharmaceutical contamination in mixed land use watersheds: from agricultural headwater to water monitoring watershed. Science of the Total Environment, Elsevier, 2017, 609, pp.992-1000. ⟨10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.07.206⟩. ⟨insu-01574739⟩



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