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Residents Worry PFAS Contamination Could Threaten Wildlife

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11/02/2018- Now that PFAS compounds have been detected in area surface water, there’s a growing concern among some Town of Peshtigo residents that the deer, fish, and other animals who live in or drink from these sources could be impacted, as well. The idea doesn’t seem that far-fetched when you consider that the Michigan DNR recently issued a “Do Not Eat” advisory for deer taken near the PFAS-contaminated Wurtsmith Air Force Base after a whitetail in the area tested positive for contamination of around 547 parts per billion. Don Pazynski is Marinette County Supervisor for District 22, which includes parts of the Town of Peshtigo. He says the Michigan report reinforces the same concerns some locals already have.
Michigan is the first state to test for PFAS in deer and it is not yet known how quickly PFAS bioaccumulates to high levels in these animals. Angela Minicuci with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says there’s no acute danger to consuming animals contaminated with high levels of PFAS, rather, it’s the long-term effects they’re concerned about.
Bay Cities Radio reached out to the Wisconsin DNR about the potential for wildlife contamination in the affected region near Tyco’s Fire Technology Center. They responded saying “At this time we are not testing for PFAS in deer in Wisconsin. Potential contamination from PFAS is an emerging issue and, like Michigan, we are working to study and understand the impacts to the environment.” The Wisconsin DNR has declined any further comment on the matter.

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