, Volume 35, Issue 4, pp 638-645

Distribution of 14 Elements in Tissues and Organs of Oceanic Seabirds

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Abstract.

The concentrations of 14 trace elements (Li, V, Mn, Co, Cu, Zn, Se, Rb, Sr, Ag, Cd, Cs, Pb, and Hg) were determined in tissues and organs of three species and in the liver of 11 species of seabirds. Comparatively high concentrations of Li, Co, Sr, and V were found in the femur. Cd, Se, Cu, and Mn concentrations were relatively higher in the kidney than in other tissues and organs. Rb, Cs, and Pb concentrations were rather uniform among tissues. Concentrations of essential elements such as Mn, Cu, and Co were comparable among seabird species, except high Cu concentrations in northern giant petrel. Among nonessential elements, concentrations of Cd and Hg were variable according to seabird species. Pb levels were low in all the species. High Se levels (100 μg/g dry weight) were found in the liver of black-footed albatross and grey petrel. There were significant positive correlations between Se and Cd concentrations in three species and between Se and Hg in black-footed albatross, suggesting that Se has an antagonistic action on the toxic effects of Cd and Hg. Concentrations of Li, V, Ag, and Cs were usually low (less than 1 μg/g dry weight).

Received: 30 October 1997/Accepted: 17 May 1998