Florida fish are on an alarming number of prescription drugs, a new study reveals.
Conducted by Florida International University, the study found that bonefish living in Florida’s Biscayne Bay and the Florida Keys each had an average of seven different types of prescription drugs in their system. One fish had 17 different pharmaceuticals in its system, including blood pressure medication, antidepressants, prostate medication, antibiotics and pain relievers, the study reveals.
The fish likely ingested the drugs after they were flushed by residents, according to lead researcher Jennifer Rehage. “Pharmaceuticals are an invisible threat, unlike algal blooms or turbid waters,” she says. “Yet these results tell us that they are a formidable threat to our fisheries, and highlight the pressing need to address our longstanding wastewater infrastructure issues.”
Is this problem the fault of residents, or sewage companies?