A new study has shed light on how drugs taken by humans can affect fish. The study showed that brown trout exposed to methamphetamine in their water changed their behaviour, brain function and had long term effects upon their behaviour and natural processes.
Around 269 million people worldwide use drugs each year, and the byproducts end up in our sewers. Sewage treatment plants don’t routinely filter out drugs. One study estimates it’d cost over £36 million to upgrade wastewater treatment plants to remove these chemicals in England and Wales alone.
In a recent study published in the Journal of Experimental Biology, researchers in the Czech Republic investigated how methamphetamine – a stimulant with a growing number of users worldwide – might be affecting wild brown trout.
They examined whether concentrations of methamphetamine and one of its byproducts, amphetamine, which were estimated from other studies that have measured illicit drug concentrations in waterways, could be detected in the brains of brown trout. They also looked at whether these concentrations were enough to cause the animals to become addicted.
To find out what the full results of this study show, how it may affect you and what you can do to help can all be found inside our article!