Chemosphere ( IF 5.778 ) Pub Date : 2020-08-01 , DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.127638 Gavin K. Dehnert; Mariella B. Freitas; Prashant P. Sharma; Terence P. Barry; William H. Karasov
Invasive, nuisance aquatic species such as Eurasian watermilfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum) are rapidly spreading across the United States. One common active ingredient used to control this invasive species is 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D). Application of 2,4-D to aquatic environments typically occurs while many freshwater fish are spawning and due to 2,4-D stability in aquatic environments, many non-target species experience prolonged exposure throughout embryogenesis and larval development. The impacts of 2,4-D exposure on phylogenetically distant fish species is poorly understood. Herein, we investigated the impacts of the 2,4-D commercial herbicide DMA4®IVM on nine freshwater fish species from six different families (four orders) at different points during ontogeny. Each species was exposed to ecologically relevant concentrations of a commercial 2,4-D herbicide (0.05, 0.50, and 2.00 ppm or mg/L 2,4-D a.e.), and effects on morphology, survival, and growth were evaluated. Our results demonstrate that exposure of embryonic and larval fish to ecologically relevant concentrations of a commercial 2,4-D herbicide reduced survival in early developmental stages of six freshwater species that spanned five phylogenetic families and three phylogenetic orders; however, sensitivity to 2,4-D exposure did not show correlation with phylogenetic proximity. Altogether, our results indicate that the use of 2,4-D herbicides in aquatic ecosystems at current recommended concentrations (< 2ppm whole-lake treatment) could present risk to multiple freshwater fish species survival during early development.