The Effects of Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals on Crayfish in a Freshwater Ecosystem

Margie Lodes, St. Joseph's Academy, St. Louis, MO, United States
Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals, or EDCs, are chemicals that interfere with the way that humans and animals utilize their hormones. In recent years there has been an influx of production of these EDCs, as well as subsequently an increase in EDC tainted waste. This waste, usually in wastewater, makes its way into freshwater ecosystems such a s streams and rivers, where it pollutes the natural environments and leads to issues with breeding and sex in aquatic life. Research on the effects of ECDs is lacking, which is why this project is being conducted. This project will focus on how crayfish in a freshwater ecosystem are impacted by none, low, medium, and high levels of ECDs. The results will show how the increase in ECD pollution will affect an important part of aquatic ecosystems in the future, as ECD pollution continues to increase with no way of filtering it out of the water.