Monitoring of poly brominated diphenyl ether (PBDEs) in otter livers began in 2011. This work allows the PBMS to measure levels of flame retardants in a predatory species that largely feed within the aquatic environment.
PBDEs have been used in many products (building materials, electronics, furnishings, motor vehicles, airoplanes, plastics, polyurethane foams, textiles). They are similar in structure to the PCBs and other polyhalogenated compounds.
There is growing concern that PBDEs have an environmental long life and may bioaccumulate in fatty (and other) tissues.