The toxicity of a ternary biocide mixture to two consecutive earthworm (Eisenia fetida) generations



The aim of the present study was to determine the toxicity of a mixture containing the biocides picoxystrobin, esfenvalerate, and triclosan to the reproduction and adult survival of two consecutive generations of Eisenia fetida (Savigny, 1826). Concentration addition and independent action were used to predict mixture toxicity. Due to degradation of mixture components during the course of the experiment, predictions were based both on the mixture composition at the beginning and the end of the exposure period. As degradations were dose–dependent, none of the calculated predictions were precise for the entire concentration range, although combining both predictions led us to conclude that lethal toxicity was well predicted by concentration addition and sublethal toxicity by independent action. Reproduction of the F1 generation was inhibited more (p < 0.0001) than reproduction of the F0 generation. Adult survival did not differ between generations. The accuracy of the mixture toxicity predictions thus depended on both the time-dependent mixture composition and the earthworm generation. The results of this study underline the need for more advanced mixture toxicity prediction models that consider degradation kinetics and changes in toxic effects over time. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 2013;32:937–947. © 2013 SETAC