Wood thrush. (Photo by Jeff Whitlock.)

Cross-posted from Cool Green Science.

Mercury pollution — nothing to worry about if I don’t live in the rural Northeast and don’t eat tons of fish, right?

Guess again, says a new report done by the Biodiversity Research Institute (BRI) in conjunction with The Nature Conservancy. The report, “Hidden Risk,” details the widespread and deep impacts of mercury pollution in terrestrial nature — particularly on animals such as songbirds and bats. Researchers are discovering how mercury is causing big declines in reproductive success among these species, as well as physiological oddities — like developmental asymmetries and an inability of some birds to hit high notes.