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Use Of The Mussel Mytilus Edulis Planulatus (Lamarck) In Monitoring Heavy Metal Levels In Seawater

D. Ritz, R. Swain, N. G. Elliott
Published 1982 · Biology

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The accumulation of cadmium, copper; lead and zinc in tissues of M.e.planulatus was examined at a number of metal concentrations in seawater. In every case, a linear relationship was found, in some cases after exposure to the metal for up to 86 days. The relationship between rate of accumulation of a metal over a 40- day period and its concentration in seawater was determined for each metal. From the results of field trials, it was concluded that the rate of accumulation could be used as a sensitive method of estimating concentrations of metals in seawater, with greater convenience than methods involving direct analysis. A monitoring program, in which M.e. planulatus is used to quantify levels of heavy metals in seawater; is proposed with certain limitations. The effects of extraneous parameters, both biological and physicochemical, on the accumulation of the metals were examined in relation to the ways in which they might limit the usefulness of this mussel in such a monitoring program.

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