Friday, May 18, 2012

Today is Endangered Species Day; Don Boudreaux on the Unintended Results of Gov't. Legislation


Today (May 18) is Endangered Species Day, and in the LearnLiberty.org video above Professor Don Boudreaux explains how the Endangered Species Act of 1973 might have good intentions (preserve threatened animals), in reality it often has the effect of giving landowners strong reasons to kill any endangered species they find on their property. This phenomenon is known as "shoot, shovel, and shut up," and is one of the unintended consequences of government regulation. 

71 Comments:

At 5/18/2012 2:57 PM, Blogger Ed R said...

Interesting Dr. Boudreaux uses the bald eagle to illustrate his very weak argument. If not for legislation in the 1970's banning DDT, many raptors would likely have become extinct.

 
At 5/18/2012 3:41 PM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

One can always trust Dr. Boudreaux to put together a good video.

 
At 5/18/2012 4:29 PM, Blogger juandos said...

" If not for legislation in the 1970's banning DDT, many raptors would likely have become extinct"...

What's even more interesting is that there are adults who still believe in fairy tales...

 
At 5/18/2012 5:10 PM, Blogger Ed R said...

http://www.nal.usda.gov/speccoll/findaids/agentorange/text/01183.pdf

 
At 5/18/2012 5:28 PM, Blogger juandos said...

Yeah ed r, that's exactly who I want to believe, some federal bureaucratic parasite living off the work of others...

But if you insist: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologists fed large doses of DDT to captive bald eagles for 112 days and concluded that “DDT residues encountered by eagles in the environment would not adversely affect eagles or their eggs,” according to a 1966 report published in the “Transcripts of 31st North America Wildlife Conference.”...

 
At 5/18/2012 6:26 PM, Blogger Methinks said...

I'm confused by your comment, Ed R.

Don Boudreaux's argument is that we should judge policies by their results, not their intentions. We should focus not on intentions but on the likely incentives provided by prospective policies when we evaluate them. Why do you think this is a weak argument? Do you regularly conflate intentions and results and think this is appropriate for some reason?

If not for legislation in the 1970's banning DDT, many raptors would likely have become extinct.

Suppose that's true for a moment. What that have to do with the Endangered Species Act? DDT was not banned to save raptors.

 
At 5/18/2012 7:16 PM, Blogger Ken said...

Ed R,

First and foremost, you should know that DDT is the most effective tool humans have in fighting malaria. The second thing you should know is that malaria has killed more people than all other diseases combined.

After that you should know that your report has been thoroughly discredited. Seriously? You rely on a 40 year old report? Citing findings that often can't be replicated (like the bald eagle thing), meaning the findins are false.

 
At 5/18/2012 8:28 PM, Blogger PeterK said...

as a result of the DDT ban we saw an incredible increase in mosquito born diseases.. DDT is still the most effective insecticide for use inside structures for the protection against mosquitos

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6083944

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124303288779048569.html

http://junkscience.com/2012/01/02/bald-eagles-still-not-saved-by-ddt-ban/

http://donpesci.blogspot.com/2007/05/ruckelshaus-carson-and-ddt.html

www.jpands.org/vol9no3/edwards.pdf

 
At 5/18/2012 9:56 PM, Blogger Mkelley said...

The Endangered Species Act is a great tool for the enviro-left to destroy industries and wipe out blue-collar jobs. These whack jobs could care less about snail darters, spotted owls, and grouse.

 
At 5/18/2012 10:12 PM, Blogger Trey said...

"Greenpeace Dropout" Patrick Moore on DDT and more.


13:30 or so he discusses DDT. 3 part video, all interesting.

 
At 5/19/2012 8:13 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

juandos: But if you insist: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologists fed large doses of DDT to captive bald eagles for 112 days and concluded that “DDT residues encountered by eagles in the environment would not adversely affect eagles or their eggs,” according to a 1966 report

DDT breaks down into DDE, which is environmentally persistant, resistant to metabolism, and detrimental to organisms at the top of the food chain, such as raptors.

Lincer, DDE-induced Eggshell Thinning in the American kestrel: A Comparison of the Field Situation and Laboratory Results, Journal of Applied Ecology 1975.

Ken: you should know that DDT is the most effective tool humans have in fighting malaria.

You should know that DDT used to be used as a general agricultural pesticide, and mosquitoes were rapidly evolving tolerance, so was losing its effectiveness.

Ken: DDT is still the most effective insecticide for use inside structures for the protection against mosquitos

That's right. While banned for agricultural use, it is still used effectively for vector control.

 
At 5/19/2012 10:34 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Interesting Dr. Boudreaux uses the bald eagle to illustrate his very weak argument. If not for legislation in the 1970's banning DDT, many raptors would likely have become extinct.

This is not true. The Audubon Society surveys showed that birds were thriving after DDT was introduced and there were no credible studies showing that DDT was bad for them. The EPA banned the chemical for political purposes based on a paper that could not be replicated if birds were fed a normal diet. (The thinning eggshell result came from feeding birds low calcium diets, not the DDT.)

 
At 5/19/2012 10:39 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

First and foremost, you should know that DDT is the most effective tool humans have in fighting malaria. The second thing you should know is that malaria has killed more people than all other diseases combined.


Actually, the irony is that the use of DDT was helping birds because they lose so many hatchlings to blood sucking insects. When the DDT killed off those insects more hatchlings survived and populations exploded.

 
At 5/20/2012 9:06 AM, Blogger juandos said...

Thanks for this baloney line zach:"DDT breaks down into DDE, which is environmentally persistant, resistant to metabolism, and detrimental to organisms at the top of the food chain, such as raptors"...

Humor is always appreciated sir...

BTW I don't see a whole lot of difference between Rachel Carson (and her present day fellow travelers) and the other great mass murderers in history...

James Delingpole nails it: Rachel Carson, environmentalism's answer to Pol Pot

 
At 5/20/2012 9:40 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

juandos: Humor is always appreciated sir...

We provided a scientific citation, which also answers why the previous study didn't detect the effect. You waved your hands.

In any case, mosquitoes were already evolving resistance to DDT and it was losing its effectiveness. Restricting the widespread use of DDT for agriculture means that it is more effective for vector control.

 
At 5/20/2012 11:50 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

We provided a scientific citation, which also answers why the previous study didn't detect the effect. You waved your hands.

Science depends on reproducible results. The 'studies' that were used to ban DDT were not reproducible. The thinner egg shells came from the 'scientists' feeding birds low calcium diets, not from the effects of DDT.

In any case, mosquitoes were already evolving resistance to DDT and it was losing its effectiveness. Restricting the widespread use of DDT for agriculture means that it is more effective for vector control.

Possibly. But DDT repeals mosquitoes even if they are resistant to it. A nest in a tree that has been sprayed will have far fewer mosquitoes go near it even if the mosquitoes are resistent.

 
At 5/20/2012 3:53 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: The 'studies' that were used to ban DDT were not reproducible. The thinner egg shells came from the 'scientists' feeding birds low calcium diets, not from the effects of DDT.

Multiple studies have confirmed the problems with DDT and raptors, but we'd be happy to look at a scientific study that indicates otherwise.

VangelV: But DDT repeals mosquitoes even if they are resistant to it.

Yes, which makes it effective as a domicile barrier.

 
At 5/20/2012 4:53 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Multiple studies have confirmed the problems with DDT and raptors, but we'd be happy to look at a scientific study that indicates otherwise.

You don't have any reproducible results. Like I said, the studies cite the papers in which 'scientists' used low calcium diets. The Audubon Society surveys show populations exploded AFTER the spraying of DDT began. From what I can see, you keep doing the same handwaving routine in which you make claims that are not supported by the actual empirical evidence and the scientific method. Which is not a surprise since you keep using the narrative of activists rather than serious science.

 
At 5/21/2012 5:59 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: You don't have any reproducible results.

Not only are the results reproducible, but they know the mechanism.

Lundholm, DDE-induced eggshell thinning in birds: effects of p,p'-DDE on the calcium and prostaglandin metabolism of the eggshell gland, omparative Biochemistry and Physiology 1997.

Peakall et al., DDE-induced egg-shell thinning: structural and physiological effects in three species, Comparative and General Pharmacology 1973.

Nygård, Pesticide residues and shell thining in eggs of Peregrines in Norway, Ornis Scandinavica 1983.

And many other such studies.

VangelV: From what I can see, you keep doing the same handwaving routine in which you make claims that are not supported by the actual empirical evidence and the scientific method.

We keep providing scientific citations based on observation, while you keep saying "Is not!".

 
At 5/21/2012 9:06 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Not only are the results reproducible, but they know the mechanism.

Lundholm, DDE-induced eggshell thinning in birds: effects of p,p'-DDE on the calcium and prostaglandin metabolism of the eggshell gland, omparative Biochemistry and Physiology 1997.

Peakall et al., DDE-induced egg-shell thinning: structural and physiological effects in three species, Comparative and General Pharmacology 1973.

Nygård, Pesticide residues and shell thining in eggs of Peregrines in Norway, Ornis Scandinavica 1983.

And many other such studies.


No. The mechanism is not not the problem. The fact that when you feed birds a normal diet is the problem. As we pointed out in many previous posts the thin shells came from feeding birds low calcium diets. When the 'error' was corrected the egg shell thicknesses were normal even with high DDT exposure.

And there is no narrative that can argue against the fact that the Audubon Society surveys found that bird populations exploded after DDT spraying began. It is clear that the mechanism that you talk about did not have a negative effect on bird mortality. Which is the point.

 
At 5/21/2012 9:38 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

We keep providing scientific citations based on observation, while you keep saying "Is not!".

But you are not citing reproducible results.

Cecil HC, Bitman J, Harris SJ. No effects on eggshells, if adequate calcium is in DDT diet. Poultry Science. 1971; 50:656–659.

Scott ML, Zimmermann JR, Marinsky S, Mullenhoff PA. Effects of PCBs, DDT, and mercury compounds upon egg production, hatchability and shell quality in chickens and Japanese quail. Poultry Science. 1975; 54:350–368.

Hell, even the Environmental Protection Agency hearing concluded that, "DDT is not a carcinogenic hazard to man. ... The uses of DDT under the regulations involved here do not have a deleterious effect on freshwater fish, estuarine organisms, wild birds, or other wildlife. ... The evidence in this proceeding supports the conclusion that there is a present need for the essential uses of DDT."

 
At 5/21/2012 10:42 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: As we pointed out in many previous posts the thin shells came from feeding birds low calcium diets.

So you've claimed repeatedly, while ignoring the citations and arguments provided.

VangelV: Cecil HC, Bitman J, Harris SJ. No effects on eggshells, if adequate calcium is in DDT diet. Poultry Science. 1971; 50:656–659.

Zachriel: DDT breaks down into DDE, which is environmentally persistant, resistant to metabolism, and detrimental to organisms at the top of the food chain, such as raptors. Lincer, DDE-induced Eggshell Thinning in the American kestrel: A Comparison of the Field Situation and Laboratory Results, Journal of Applied Ecology 1975.

VangelV: Scott ML, Zimmermann JR, Marinsky S, Mullenhoff PA. Effects of PCBs, DDT, and mercury compounds upon egg production, hatchability and shell quality in chickens and Japanese quail. Poultry Science. 1975; 54:350–368.

That's right. The effect is not seen in gallinaceous birds.

VangelV: "The uses of DDT under the regulations involved here do not have a deleterious effect on freshwater fish, estuarine organisms, wild birds, or other wildlife"

Right again! Carefully regulated use of DDT is warranted for vector control, while widespread use in agriculture is not.

 
At 5/21/2012 6:24 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

VangelV: "The uses of DDT under the regulations involved here do not have a deleterious effect on freshwater fish, estuarine organisms, wild birds, or other wildlife"

Right again! Carefully regulated use of DDT is warranted for vector control, while widespread use in agriculture is not.


The hearing happened before the ban. The spraying did not harm birds. They actually thrived and their populations exploded. This is why the mechanism paper that you cited is bogus. It was not observed in the real world where bird populations went up while the activists said they would go down.

Of course, you idiots have never been very good at science other than to come up with convenient lies that cannot be replicated just in time to prevent something or other from being used by consumers. And if the ban winds up with more dangerous chemicals and more deaths your side still wins because it is interested in cutting down human populations because it sees humans as a cancer that needs to be eradicated.

The problem is that such strategies may work for a while but in the end they fail miserably. We have already seen many governments push back on DDT and approve it over the objections of activists. In the case of the AGW lies there are rebellions in the EU as expensive alternative energy has made people much poorer and failed to deliver the electricity needed during the brutal cold periods that were not supposed to happen. The press is already turing against the liars and are looking for a way to save face. My guess is that they will go after Hansen and Mann as they keep pointing to the data adjustments that hid inconveniently warm periods in the past while it added a warming signal to the present.

 
At 5/22/2012 6:22 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: The hearing happened before the ban.

While the evidence was somewhat ambiguous in 1972, the time of the Sweeney hearings, within several years, the relationship between DDT and eggshell thinning was well-established. As you are using the EPA as a source, here is their followup report from 1975, which cites 179 studies confirming the link.
http://www.epa.gov/history/topics/ddt/DDT.pdf

Also, keep in mind that agricultural use increased the rate at which mosquitoes developed DDT resistance. Restricting its use in agriculture makes DDT more effective for vector control.

 
At 5/22/2012 7:19 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

While the evidence was somewhat ambiguous in 1972, the time of the Sweeney hearings, within several years, the relationship between DDT and eggshell thinning was well-established. As you are using the EPA as a source, here is their followup report from 1975, which cites 179 studies confirming the link.
http://www.epa.gov/history/topics/ddt/DDT.pdf


The evidence was not ambiguous. It was based on studies designed to get a result that was not reproducible when the errors were corrected. As I said, the real world measurements showed populations exploding in the wild. That data falsified the theories being pushed by the activists. But that did not stop the ban and the result were millions of dead who should not have died.

 
At 5/22/2012 8:49 AM, Blogger juandos said...

"We provided a scientific citation, which also answers why the previous study didn't detect the effect"...

Just because you call something, 'scientific citation' doesn't make it so zach...

"In any case, mosquitoes were already evolving resistance to DDT and it was losing its effectiveness. Restricting the widespread use of DDT for agriculture means that it is more effective for vector control"...

Meanwhile back in the real world zach we have the following: Another favored ideology of environmental activists is that any use of insecticides is counterproductive, because it results in resistant mosquitoes. In fact, there is little evidence that insecticides on house walls constitute a strong selective pressure for insecticide resistance. Likewise, there is little evidence that resistance, once developed, reduces the effectiveness of DDT residues in preventing indoor transmission of malaria...

You and Pol Pot, eh zach?

 
At 5/22/2012 10:19 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: It was based on studies designed to get a result that was not reproducible when the errors were corrected.

You keep saying that, but never show it. Multiple studies have shown the link. The only study you mentioned used DDT not DDE, and did not include non-gallinaceous birds.

juandos: Just because you call something, 'scientific citation doesn't make it so

Citations to the primary scientific literature that include empirical observations and studies is exactly what is meant by a scientific citation. That doesn't necessarily make the findings correct, but is generally more persuasive than waving one's hands and saying "Is not."


juandos: there is little evidence that insecticides on house walls constitute a strong selective pressure for insecticide resistance.

That is correct. DDT is often used to create habitat barriers.

 
At 5/22/2012 2:10 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

You keep saying that, but never show it. Multiple studies have shown the link. The only study you mentioned used DDT not DDE, and did not include non-gallinaceous birds.

What I depend on is the real world observations. As I pointed out, when the Audubon surveys show a huge explosion in most bird populations it is hard for you idiots to support conclusions by activists who game the studies to come up with results that are not reproducible.

Citations to the primary scientific literature that include empirical observations and studies is exactly what is meant by a scientific citation. That doesn't necessarily make the findings correct, but is generally more persuasive than waving one's hands and saying "Is not."

But when you cite fake studies that use low calcium diets to implicate DDT it is very likely that your studies are not worth the paper they were written on. As I keep pointing out, we have real world observations that falsify all of the conclusions that you are trying to claim are valid.

 
At 5/22/2012 3:31 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: As I pointed out, when the Audubon surveys show a huge explosion in most bird populations ...

Heh. Do you even understand how Audubon does bird counts or what those counts mean statistically? In any case, it was Audubon observers that first noted the problems with DDT.

All you do is pull quote-mines from other websites that repeat endlessly the same list of "facts". That's why we keep asking for citations to the primary scientific literature.

 
At 5/22/2012 3:51 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Heh. Do you even understand how Audubon does bird counts or what those counts mean statistically? In any case, it was Audubon observers that first noted the problems with DDT.

All you do is pull quote-mines from other websites that repeat endlessly the same list of "facts". That's why we keep asking for citations to the primary scientific literature.


They counted birds. The counts showed a huge increase in the numbers after DDT spraying began. That is not a problem.

And the facts are what they are. When bird populations go up your argument that DDT was killing them is falsified. End of story.

 
At 5/22/2012 5:38 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: They counted birds. The counts showed a huge increase in the numbers after DDT spraying began. That is not a problem.

That's what we thought you thought. You pull something from a right-wing website, and don't consider it skeptically. Even if you Google it, all you have are echos of the same information.

If there are more counters in more localities, the bird count will be higher. If the counters are more experienced, the bird count will be higher. The data is only useful when analyzed in conjunction with all the facts, not only how the counting was done, but other aspects of the environment, such as habitat degradation.

 
At 5/23/2012 7:17 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

That's what we thought you thought. You pull something from a right-wing website, and don't consider it skeptically. Even if you Google it, all you have are echos of the same information.

If there are more counters in more localities, the bird count will be higher. If the counters are more experienced, the bird count will be higher. The data is only useful when analyzed in conjunction with all the facts, not only how the counting was done, but other aspects of the environment, such as habitat degradation.


There were no more counters. The number of nesting pairs observed in a particular area would increase substantially. The populations exploded and there was never any question of the data quality. The narrative came later when the frauds who fed birds low calcium diets to get thinner shells needed a diversion to explain why the real world data did not support their conclusions.

This is what the AGW frauds have done time and time. But this time serious scientists have had enough and have spoken out against the fraud. A friend passed me a note saying that even Nature is finally admitting that the papers it has published do not meet standards. Former green allies have turned against the 'team' and political allies are running as fast as they can from the liars.

The green movement went from worrying about conservation to promoting global socialism and Malthusianism. It turned climate change into a religion but is now losing members as truth wins out.

 
At 5/23/2012 7:42 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: There were no more counters.

The National Audubon Society Christmas Bird count started with 26 volunteers in 1900. The number of groups rose to about 150 in the 1940's, and increased steadily after that, reaching a thousand in the early 1970's.

You are basing your entire position on a volunteer survey. While the survey does provide useful data, as with all scientific observations, it has to be analysed based on how the observations were made.

 
At 5/23/2012 7:47 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

Zachriel: You are basing your entire position on a volunteer survey.

Sorry, that is not quite accurate. You are basing your entire argument on a voluntary survey. Your position is based on a predetermined conclusion, not on data.

 
At 5/23/2012 8:19 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

Also, the nature of the groups changed. Where originally it was primarily individuals or small parties, nowadays tens-of-thousands of people participate in organized groups.

Here's a paper that describes some of the problems, including species identification, weather and lack of regional coverage.

Butcher et al., An evaluation of the Christmas Bird Count for monitoring population trends of selected species, Wildlife Society Bulletin 1990.

 
At 5/23/2012 8:29 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Sorry, that is not quite accurate. You are basing your entire argument on a voluntary survey. Your position is based on a predetermined conclusion, not on data.

Not at all. The surveys show population explosions. The conclusions were not disputed by anyone until after the green movement began its scam. We know that the 'scientists' resorted to tricks like feeding birds low calcium diets and blame DDT for thinning egg shells. We also know that egg shell thicknesses in the wild had varied over time even before DDT was invented. We know that the claims of cancer increases were shown to be false and caused by feeding the subjects contaminated food. We know that the EPA administrator concluded that DDT was not a problem.

All we have from your side are claims that are falsified by the facts and a lot of studies that cannot be replicated.

 
At 5/23/2012 8:47 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: There were no more counters.

Wrong.

VangelV: The surveys show population explosions.

This is the very reason why we can tell you aren't basing your position on the facts, but are defending a preconceived position. Even when shown that you don't understand your own primary source, it doesn't change your position one iota.

 
At 5/23/2012 2:31 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Butcher et al., An evaluation of the Christmas Bird Count for monitoring population trends of selected species, Wildlife Society Bulletin 1990.

How original. If you don't like something because it disproves your proven lies write a narrative to rewrite history. It is like the 'missing heat' in the oceans or the inconvenient MWP that needs to be hidden from sight.

Sorry but you are going to have to do better. As I pointed out when birds were given a normal diet and DDT there was no thinning of egg shells. Since there was no evidence of bird populations falling there was no basis for the claims.

 
At 5/23/2012 3:09 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: If you don't like something because it disproves your proven lies write a narrative to rewrite history.

In other words, you wave your hands and hope the pesky facts go away. If you have a problem with Butcher et al., then you should be specific, but most of the points raised in the paper are fairly obvious. You have amateur birdwatchers counting birds in a haphazard fashion, with numbers of counters, composition of counting groups, methodologies and regions covered changing over time. Refusing to account for these problems will lead to erroneous conclusions.

VangelV: As I pointed out when birds were given a normal diet and DDT there was no thinning of egg shells.

The only cite you provided concerned gallinaceous birds which are not subject to the problem with DDE. You then repeatedly ignored our response on this point.

 
At 5/23/2012 6:13 PM, Blogger VangelV said...


In other words, you wave your hands and hope the pesky facts go away. If you have a problem with Butcher et al., then you should be specific, but most of the points raised in the paper are fairly obvious. You have amateur birdwatchers counting birds in a haphazard fashion, with numbers of counters, composition of counting groups, methodologies and regions covered changing over time. Refusing to account for these problems will lead to erroneous conclusions.



Not at all. I have provided many links in previous postings that you kept ignoring. I will not dig them up again. Some of us pointed out that some of the clear declines (which you would not say are in dispute because of lousy methodology) were due to hunting and the use of traps. We provided data that showed a huge explosion in the number of observed birds. It was not just the totals; the per person observations were higher. And the data was not in dispute until after the green movement figured out that it was a problem for their false narrative.

I cannot understand why you would accept the word of the same group of people who created studies designed to come up with predetermined conclusions and could not reproduce results. And I don't understand why you are falling for the same tricks again.

Let me point out that the idiots in the green movement are no longer interested in the environment. They now seem to be far more interested in anti-capitalist economic issues.

I suggest that you look at reality as it is and start running away from the lying fools like most of their former supporters who realize that the idiots can no longer keep all the balls in the air.

 
At 5/23/2012 6:53 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: Some of us pointed out that some of the clear declines (which you would not say are in dispute because of lousy methodology) were due to hunting and the use of traps.

That is certainly true. Restrictions on hunting endangered species has helped them recover.

VangelV: We provided data that showed a huge explosion in the number of observed birds.

That tells you more about the increase in observers, rather than birds. That would be like you saying you have a robin in your yard, then the next day everyone notices a robin in their yards too, and thereby concluding that the population has exploded.

VangelV: It was not just the totals; the per person observations were higher.

Finally. That would be a better measure. However, there is a still problem with how the observations were made, and as the number is small, the variance would be high.

The Lincer (1975) study is considered definitive, and no, they didn't use a low calcium diet. They not only showed that DDE caused eggshell thinning in a straightline relationship, but showed the same relationship in nature. However, there have been many such studies. The question in science has moved far beyond whether environmental DDT causes eggshell thinning, but what is the mechanism, how long does it persist, how it reacts with other pollutants, and numerous studies of local and historical effects.

 
At 5/23/2012 7:30 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Finally. That would be a better measure. However, there is a still problem with how the observations were made, and as the number is small, the variance would be high.

Nonsense. If anything the greater number of newbies would mean a lower per person count even if the numbers had stayed the same.

The Lincer (1975) study is considered definitive, and no, they didn't use a low calcium diet. They not only showed that DDE caused eggshell thinning in a straightline relationship, but showed the same relationship in nature. However, there have been many such studies. The question in science has moved far beyond whether environmental DDT causes eggshell thinning, but what is the mechanism, how long does it persist, how it reacts with other pollutants, and numerous studies of local and historical effects.

First, Lincer looked at three species and found that in two of them there was no effect. Second, his studies never showed that there was any harm done to the hatchlings. Third, his study never compared the thinning amounts to the amount of natural variation found by area, which is something that we have known about for years.

Once again, this is just narrative. You have groups embarrassed by the published real world observations scrambling to rewrite history and a lot of results that have nothing to do with bird mortality, which is the entire point of banning DDT to begin with. That is not science. It is activism of the worst sort.

And it is still what we are seeing out of the alarmist camps. But this time there are thousands of people looking at the claims and pointing out the inconsistencies. As a result the team has to keep making wilder claims and spin all kinds of narratives that cannot be supported by observations and are shown to contradict previous claims. We have already seen supporters abandon ship and point out the terrible state of climate science. By doing so they hope to salvage their own reputations and get people to forget their previous promotion of alarmist rhetoric that was clearly bogus to anyone with a brain and without an agenda.

The game is almost over and the alarmist camp is in ruins. The fact that you ignore the data and still keep citing studies that are designed to advance a narrative rather than knowledge shows that yours is a theological rather than scientific position.

 
At 5/23/2012 7:59 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: Lincer looked at three species and found that in two of them there was no effect.

The Lincer paper concerned Kestrels, Falco sparverius. He showed that DDE caused eggshell thinning in the captive population matched the DDE-to-thinning ratio in the wild.

 
At 5/23/2012 8:30 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

The Lincer paper concerned Kestrels, Falco sparverius. He showed that DDE caused eggshell thinning in the captive population matched the DDE-to-thinning ratio in the wild.

Lincer looked at three bird species, not one. And he did not show that thinning increased chick mortality, particularly in a world where there were fewer blood sucking insects to kill them. Did you forget the comment, For two other species, bobwhite and Japanese quail, no thinning was observed with either agent. Or the fact that there is no study that looks at actual chick mortality rates, which is what you need to show that DDT is killing them?

You are going to have to do a hell of a lot better.

 
At 5/24/2012 7:55 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: For two other species, bobwhite and Japanese quail, no thinning was observed with either agent.

That wasn't the study to which we were referring.

Lincer, DDE-induced Eggshell Thinning in the American kestrel: A Comparison of the Field Situation and Laboratory Results, Journal of Applied Ecology 1975.

As for the study you are looking at, they concluded that DDE caused shellthinning in mallards and kestrals. No thinning was noted in gallinaceous birds, as we noted way up above.

VangelV: Or the fact that there is no study that looks at actual chick mortality rates, which is what you need to show that DDT is killing them?

Seriously? Do you really not understand how scientists work? There have been numerous studies about the effects of shellthinning on chick mortality and reproductive rates.

Longcore & Samson, Eggshell Breakage by Incubating Black Ducks Fed DDE, Journal of Wildlife Management 1973.

Henny & Bennett, Comparison of Breaking Strength and Shell Thickness as Evaluators of White-Faced Ibis Eggshell Quality, Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 1990.

There are hundreds of such studies all over the world; some in the lab, some in nature, many specific to certain regions or species or populations.

 
At 5/24/2012 9:18 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

That wasn't the study to which we were referring.

Lincer, DDE-induced Eggshell Thinning in the American kestrel: A Comparison of the Field Situation and Laboratory Results, Journal of Applied Ecology 1975.


I know. But I pointed out that Lancer was studying many different species. He dropped the results in which DDT was having no effect on egg shell thickness to concentrate on the one that fit the narrative. But these studies have not been reproduced and given the very low certainties it is possible that what we have is a random outcome. Lancer certainly did not follow-up and see if there was any effect on chick mortality. There certainly was no mortality effect observed in the wild so I do not see the problem.

See what you did? A study comes out and shows that two of four species MAY have a problem with DDE (not DDT). You cite the paper in which the other two species are ignored in favour of the paper that fits your narrative.

But you ignore that the point is mortality, not variation in shell thicknesses that may be caused by other factors. And on the mortality front the greens fall flat on their faces because there is no data to support any of their claims.

And I have yet to find anyone who can reproduce those results, leading me to believe that this is one of the typical three sigma papers that the hard sciences people laugh at.

Seriously? Do you really not understand how scientists work? There have been numerous studies about the effects of shellthinning on chick mortality and reproductive rates.

I know exactly how they work. The problem is that the scientists seem to have ignored the fact that populations increased in the wild because the DDT and DDE were not having a negative effect on the birds being studied. From what I can tell the studies are not exactly reproducible or statistically sound.

Keep in mind that 'scientists' fed toxic feed to animals and low calcium diets to birds to get the effect that they wanted. You let me feed the birds and I can get you any egg shell thickness changes that you want. When I think of science I usually think of the hard sciences where most factors are controlled and errors are very tiny, not the type of studies that can produce a false conclusion 5% of the time without anyone blinking an eye. When you run enough of these studies it is easy to find a few that get the results that you want because they are a part of the 5%. Your AGW friends have shown you just how easy it is to do that. The original egg shell study showed the same thing. Yet you keep persisting in ignoring the real world observations and keep citing the same people.

The real world is clear. You stop shooting or trapping the birds and stop destroying their nests and their numbers will explode even if you spray DDT. In fact, by killing the insects that present a great danger to them the DDT ensures that more birds survive.

 
At 5/24/2012 11:54 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: He dropped the results in which DDT was having no effect on egg shell thickness to concentrate on the one that fit the narrative.

The PCB/DDE study of four species came two decades *afterwards*. It's primary purpose was to study PCBs. The effects of DDT have already been established by a multitude of studies.

VangelV: You cite the paper in which the other two species are ignored in favour of the paper that fits your narrative.

As pointed out repeatedly, not all species are affected by DDT and its byproducts.

VangelV: Keep in mind that 'scientists' fed toxic feed to animals and low calcium diets to birds to get the effect that they wanted.

We have addressed that point. Is there a reason why you can't assimilate new information?

 
At 5/25/2012 9:08 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

The PCB/DDE study of four species came two decades *afterwards*. It's primary purpose was to study PCBs. The effects of DDT have already been established by a multitude of studies.


But that is the point. There were no valid studies with reproducible results that could show that the actual spraying in the wild cased bird populations to decline. Yes, there were declines due to hunting and habitat destruction but those are different factors. The fact is that the studies done did not show any mortality increases and that is a problem for the liars in the green movement.

Now that the AGW fraud has been exposed as the worst of junk science more and more people are starting to look back on the other false claims made by the green movement. And they are not liking what they find.

 
At 5/25/2012 9:09 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

We have addressed that point. Is there a reason why you can't assimilate new information?

But you haven't. The studies I cited could not be reproduced when they were checked. Yet their claims were accepted as gospel by the true believers in the green movement. I merely point out that the other studies that you are quoting are not reproducible, particularly under natural conditions.

 
At 5/25/2012 9:23 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: There were no valid studies with reproducible results that could show that the actual spraying in the wild cased bird populations to decline.

Lincer, DDE-induced Eggshell Thinning in the American kestrel: A Comparison of the Field Situation and Laboratory Results, Journal of Applied Ecology 1975; among a multitude of others, establishes eggshell thinning due to DDE.

Longcore & Samson, Eggshell Breakage by Incubating Black Ducks Fed DDE, Journal of Wildlife Management 1973; among many others, establishes that eggshell thinning leads to eggshell breakage.

And a large number of papers, including Newton et al., Habitat, Female Age, Organo-Chlorine Compounds and Breeding of European Sparrowhawks, Journal of Applied Ecology 1979; show the relationship between DDE concentration and nest failures.

 
At 5/25/2012 8:02 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Lincer, DDE-induced Eggshell Thinning in the American kestrel: A Comparison of the Field Situation and Laboratory Results, Journal of Applied Ecology 1975; among a multitude of others, establishes eggshell thinning due to DDE.

But not thinning due to exposure to concentrations of DDT that would be found in the wild and certainly no increased mortality due to DDT spraying. When bird populations increase it is hard to argue that the spraying was killing them.

Longcore & Samson, Eggshell Breakage by Incubating Black Ducks Fed DDE, Journal of Wildlife Management 1973; among many others, establishes that eggshell thinning leads to eggshell breakage.

And a large number of papers, including Newton et al., Habitat, Female Age, Organo-Chlorine Compounds and Breeding of European Sparrowhawks, Journal of Applied Ecology 1979; show the relationship between DDE concentration and nest failures.


None of the papers deal with exposure due to the spraying of DDT. None find that spraying of DDT would lead to increased mortality. As I said, once the first sets of studies were faked the ship sailed. While fake studies were enough to get the EPA to ban use of DDT repeating the fake studies was not enough for people who think of real science as being rigorous to believe in the integrity of the environmentalist literature. And as I pointed out, as more and more people find out just how much the environmentalists chose to distort science in order to lie on the AGW issue the less and less trust there is.

 
At 5/26/2012 7:18 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: None find that spraying of DDT would lead to increased mortality.

We have pointed to studies showing nesting failure correlated with DDE concentrations. We can't make you read them.

 
At 5/26/2012 7:33 AM, Blogger VangelV said...


We have pointed to studies showing nesting failure correlated with DDE concentrations. We can't make you read them.


And we have pointed out that the number of birds went up because the blood sucking insects that kill so many hatchlings were killed by DDT spraying but we can't get you to pay attention. Real world observations trump three sigma studies by people eager to come up with a particular conclusion.

This entire discussion was replayed recently when 'researchers' were talking about how AGW was endangering polar bear populations even though the populations had exploded during the past three decades. Instead of getting papers that show that the alarmists were wrong I expect to see a few that try to rewrite the past and argue that the counting techniques were faulty. But knowing what we know the public will not buy that one either.

 
At 5/26/2012 8:34 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: And we have pointed out that the number of birds went up because the blood sucking insects that kill so many hatchlings were killed by DDT spraying but we can't get you to pay attention.

Didn't see any paper to that effect. Can you provide a journal citation that 1) shows that populations of non-gallinaceous birds generally increased after DDT spraying 2) that this was *caused* by reduction in insect populations?

Brown Pelicans
California: 1950 10000, 1969 500
Texas: 1920 5000, 1963 100
Louisiana: 1920 50000, 1963 0

Of course, there are many causes of reduced population, hunting, pollution of various types, degradation of habitat. However, we do know this: DDE thins eggshells, and thinning eggshells lead to nest failures. This reduces reproductive rates, meaning that when there are other stresses on birds, populations take longer to recover, if they recover at all.

 
At 5/26/2012 9:05 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Of course, there are many causes of reduced population, hunting, pollution of various types, degradation of habitat. However, we do know this: DDE thins eggshells, and thinning eggshells lead to nest failures. This reduces reproductive rates, meaning that when there are other stresses on birds, populations take longer to recover, if they recover at all.

We know that if I feed you enough salt you will die. That does not mean that salt is a toxin that needs to be avoided at low doses. Let me repeat, there are no studies that looked at what happens to hatchlings in the wild when exposed to natural amounts of DDT residue after spraying. And as I pointed out, the EPA report did not find that there was any danger. The decision to ban the pesticide was political. And the replacement pesticide was far more toxic and actually wound up killing people. There was never a reported case of anyone dying from DDT exposure.

As I said, this is just like the current polar bear debate when the greens are screaming danger and endangerment while the observations are showing a booming population.

 
At 5/26/2012 9:07 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: Let me repeat, there are no studies that looked at what happens to hatchlings in the wild when exposed to natural amounts of DDT residue after spraying.

Repeating it doesn't make the studies go away. We have pointed to studies that show that DDE concentrations cause nesting failures in the wild. Try,

Newton et al., Habitat, Female Age, Organo-Chlorine Compounds and Breeding of European Sparrowhawks, Journal of Applied Ecology 1979.

 
At 5/26/2012 9:25 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Newton et al., Habitat, Female Age, Organo-Chlorine Compounds and Breeding of European Sparrowhawks, Journal of Applied Ecology 1979.

There is nothing definitive here. As we have with AGW studies that show no statistically significant effect of CO2 emissions you get a line that brings up DDE. But the ultimate conclusion is that there are many factors at play that affect bird reproduction. It was interesting that I did not see a comment about the effect of having less blood sucking insects harm chicks thanks to the spraying of DDT. You would think that would matter.

 
At 5/26/2012 12:34 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: There is nothing definitive here.

Hmm. You have nesting failures due to egg breakage correlated with the concentration of DDE. That's direct evidence that DDE reduces the reproductive rate of birds exposed to DDE. That's what you asked for.

VangelV: It was interesting that I did not see a comment about the effect of having less blood sucking insects harm chicks thanks to the spraying of DDT.

You're right. You never did answer. Can you provide a journal citation that 1) shows that populations of non-gallinaceous birds generally increased after DDT spraying 2) that this was *caused* by reduction in insect populations?

 
At 5/26/2012 9:40 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Hmm. You have nesting failures due to egg breakage correlated with the concentration of DDE. That's direct evidence that DDE reduces the reproductive rate of birds exposed to DDE. That's what you asked for.

First, read the entire paper. Item 6, the DDE comment was not a big deal. After all, only a few of the nests had issues with breakage. Clearly the vast majority of birds were unaffected. One of the things that I did not see was the concentrations of DDE in the nests where there was no failure. If those egg shells also had higher DDE concentrations, which would make sense given that the birds lived in the same areas, no definitive conclusion could be reached. (Which is probably why the issue was not written up.)

What also seemed not to be considered was the survival of chicks in areas where spraying had taken place because fewer insects could prey on them by taking their blood and infecting them with disease. I recall that West Nile, which was deadly to birds was spread by mosquitoes. If spraying with DDT killed off those mosquitoes all those dead birds, adults and well as chicks, would have survived.

The study that you cited was a puff piece when it comes to DDT. You will have to do a hell of a lot better.

Again, this study reminds me of the polar bear studies that showed a lower bear population in a certain area and blaming that on AGW. The problem of course was that the area had not warmed but cooled and that bears are mobile and move to more favourable areas. So while the alarmists were hyping up the study they ignored the fact that the bear population in the wild had doubled. In the real world stuff like that matters.

 
At 5/26/2012 9:44 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

By the way, other studies that cited the paper could not reproduce the results and concluded that, a small degree of eggshell thinning was attributed to DDE and a few other statistical tests were significant, but no contaminant or combination of contaminants we measured seemed to have a pronounced effect on the aspects of reproduction we followed.

 
At 5/26/2012 9:46 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

You're right. You never did answer. Can you provide a journal citation that 1) shows that populations of non-gallinaceous birds generally increased after DDT spraying 2) that this was *caused* by reduction in insect populations?

I don't need to show a paper. I already cited the bird surveys that showed a huge increase in bird populations. And no, I do not believe that the attempt to rewrite that history was any more successful than the attempt to hide the MWP and LIA by MBH and the team.

 
At 5/27/2012 9:13 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: One of the things that I did not see was the concentrations of DDE in the nests where there was no failure.

See Table 6: "Clutches which succeeded contained significantly less DDE, PCB and HEOD than did those which failed ... in a multiple regression, the only relationships that remained significant were between DDE, shell-thinning and egg-breakage"

VangelV: If those egg shells also had higher DDE concentrations, which would make sense given that the birds lived in the same areas, no definitive conclusion could be reached.

That statement makes no sense in the light of the study. There were differences in DDE concentration, and these were strongly correlated with nesting failure.

As you have introduced Heinz, while the cited study didn't show a relationship of DDE to nesting failures in red-breast​ed mergansers, he and his colleagues have found that DDT and related compounds are responsible for reproductive failures in eagles, ospreys, and many other species of ducks. Heinz & Wiemeyer, Effects of Contaminants on Birds, U.S. Fish and Wildlife.

VangelV: I don't need to show a paper.

Heh. Yes, we've heard some say that ignorance prevails.

 
At 5/27/2012 9:43 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

VangelV: I don't need to show a paper.

Heh. Yes, we've heard some say that ignorance prevails.


As I pointed out, the Audubon surveys showed that the number of birds exploded. I cited plenty of papers previously so I do not feel like looking them up again. But I cold do a quick search and come up with a brief summary.

Cecil, HC et al. 1971. Poultry Science 50: 656-659 (No effects of DDT or DDE, if adequate calcium is in diet)

Chang, ES & ELR Stokstad. 1975. Poultry Science 54: 3-10 1975. (No effects of DDT on shells)

Edwards, JG. 1971. Chem Eng News p. 6 & 59 (August 16, 1971) (Summary of egg shell- thinning and refutations presented revealing all data)

Hazeltine, WE. 1974. Statement and affidavit, EPA Hearings on Tussock Moth Control, Portland Oregon, p. 9 (January 14, 1974)

Jeffries, DJ. 1969. J Wildlife Management 32: 441-456 (Shells 7 percent thicker after two years on DDT diet)

Robson, WA et al. 1976. Poultry Science 55:2222- 2227; Scott, ML et al. 1975. Poultry Science 54: 350-368 (Egg production, hatchability and shell quality depend on calcium, and are not effected by DDT and its metabolites)

Spears, G & P. Waibel. 1972. Minn. Science 28(3):4-5; Tucker, RK & HA Haegele. 1970. Bull Environ Contam. Toxicol 5:191-194 (Neither egg weight nor shell thickness affected by 300 parts per million DDT in daily diet)

Edwards, JG. 1973. Statement and affidavit, U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, 24 pages, October 24, 1973; Poult Sci 1979 Nov;58(6):1432-49 ("There was no correlation between concentrations of pesticides and egg shell thinning.")

 
At 5/27/2012 8:29 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: Cecil, HC et al. 1971. Poultry Science 50: 656-659 (No effects of DDT or DDE, if adequate calcium is in diet)

Is that a valid citation? It is probably referring to "Changes in egg shell quality and pesticide content of laying hens or pullets fed DDT in high or low calcium diets."

In any case, we have already discussed that gallinaceous birds are not as susceptible to DDT. Also, DDE is the more likely culprit. In any case, what does the paper actually say? Aren't you in the least curious? Did you read the paper, or even the abstract? Turns out that DDT does have an effect on shell thickness.

"Egg shell thickness. After two to four months of feeding DDT in a 3.5% calcium diet, egg shells from second year hens were significantly thinner than controls, but shells from pullets fed DDT were significantly thicker than control eggs. DDT had no effect on egg shell thickness of birds fed the low calcium diets."

Actually, now that we look at your list, they all seem to be echos from a single source. And it looks like no one who ever cites them has ever read them. For instance,

The next one is Chang & Stokstad, "Effect of chlorinated hydrocarbons on shell gland carbonic anhydrase and egg shell thickness in Japanese quail." Again, gallinaceous birds, and in high enough concentrations did result in shell breakage or even death.

There's little point going further if you can't even be bothered to read your own citations, especially when they directly contradict your position.

 
At 5/27/2012 8:46 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

The next one is Chang & Stokstad, "Effect of chlorinated hydrocarbons on shell gland carbonic anhydrase and egg shell thickness in Japanese quail." Again, gallinaceous birds, and in high enough concentrations did result in shell breakage or even death.

The problem is that the Japanese quail populations did not fall due to DDT spraying. And as I keep pointing out, you keep ignoring the fact that the DDT kills the insects that kill the birds. For example, West Nile would not have killed all those birds had there been DDT spraying to control mosquito populations. And let us not forget those people who died of the infections.

 
At 5/28/2012 6:27 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

You just regurgitated a quote-mine, and the studies were misrepresented. Doesn't that cause you even the slightest pause?

 
At 5/28/2012 7:48 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

You just regurgitated a quote-mine, and the studies were misrepresented. Doesn't that cause you even the slightest pause?

No, because the real world observations support my view, not yours. DDT killed the insects that are one of the biggest killers of hatchlings. That made the populations explode.

It was your side of the debate that used fake studies to ban DDT. Cherry picking material to support the conclusions of those studies is to be expected. Your problem is that you think that these 'studies' are scientifically valid when the opposite is true. It is only the hard sciences that can pretend to follow the true scientific method. Studies done by psychologists, physicians, or ecologists do not make the grade. This is why so many of the journals are embarrassed at this time. Hundreds of the studies that they published cannot be reproduced. The green movement has even more problems because almost everything that it has published is not valid and has reached conclusions that cannot be supported by the evidence. Remember those polar bears? Or the hurricanes? Or that tropospheric hot spot? Or the Hockey Stick. All of it turned out to be garbage created by cherry picking, statistical tricks and outright falsification.

 
At 5/28/2012 1:07 PM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: No, because the real world observations support my view, not yours.

And to support that you regurgitated citations to a number of studies which directly contradict your position.

VangelV: Your problem is that you think that these 'studies' are scientifically valid when the opposite is true.

My Goodness, VangelV. YOU cited them!

 
At 5/29/2012 7:44 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

And to support that you regurgitated citations to a number of studies which directly contradict your position.

Not at all. The studies make very clear that the conclusions that DDT spraying increases bird mortality has no real world support. Not only are some egg shells not effected by massive amounts of DDT that could never be reached in the wild but most of the studies that you cited keep talking about a number of other factors. None of the studies ever bothered to look at the effect of having fewer blood sucking insects on bird mortality. Why do you suppose that is? And why do you suppose that bird populations exploded AFTER DDT spraying began?

As I pointed out, you guys were trying the same tricks with Polar Bear studies showing that warming was bad for their numbers. Yet, the counts show that we are at a record high for the bears and that the ares in which populations had fallen were actually cooling rather than warming. Your movement is suffering from the cry wolf syndrome. I found it interesting that a survey showed that the people who are most likely to believe these stories are those that have the least knowledge of science. I would say that is very inconvenient for your narrative.

 
At 5/29/2012 9:11 AM, Blogger Zachriel said...

VangelV: The studies make very clear that the conclusions that DDT spraying increases bird mortality has no real world support.

This is hilarious! Not only have you been provided citations that support decreases in bird reproductive rate due to increased mortality in bird embryos, but YOU provided citations that showed the same!

 
At 5/30/2012 9:16 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

This is hilarious! Not only have you been provided citations that support decreases in bird reproductive rate due to increased mortality in bird embryos, but YOU provided citations that showed the same!

I provided citations that show that it was not a big deal. And I pointed out that the studies that you look at did not even attempt to look at the increased survival rates because the insects that prayed on chicks were killed by the DDT. In the real world that matters and it showed up in larger numbers for most bird populations.

Don't you recall the warmers on this site posting polar bear studies that showed that bear populations were going down even as their numbers were actually exploding? The studies used some data and faulty models to reach conclusions that were not supported by the real world evidence. This is exactly why the public is no longer paying any attention to the spin and lies by the green movement. And why those who have a better education in science are far less likely to believe the lies than the scientifically uneducated that the green movement tends to pray on.

 

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