Date: 10 Feb 2012

Mercury Levels in Sediments and Mangrove Oysters, Crassostrea rizophorae, from the North Coast of Villa Clara, Cuba

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Abstract

Total mercury levels were quantified in sediments and oyster tissues (Crassostrea rizophorae) from the Sagua la Grande River estuary and offshore mangrove keys 19 km downstream of a chlor-alkali plant (CAP) in Villa Clara, Cuba. Relatively elevated total mercury levels were found in sediments from the estuary itself, ranging from 0.507 to 1.81 μg g−1 dry weight. However, levels were lower in sediments from the keys farther from the estuary. Oyster mercury levels were always acceptable for human consumption, although levels significantly correlated in sediments and oysters across sampling sites (p < 0.05), which suggests that mercury from the CAP is impacting coastal water quality conditions.