Indication of environmental pollution by means of INAA of the hair of some free living mammals

  • I. Obrusník
  • J. Paukert
Nuclear Methods in Environmental Science


Hair samples collected from free living mammals common hare (Lepus europaeus Pall.), common vole (Microtus arvallis Pall.) and wood mouse (Apodemus sylvaticus L.) have been subjected to instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA). up to 18 elements As, Au, Br, Ce, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Hg, K, La, Na, Sb, Sc, Se, Sm, Th and Zn have been determined in each hair sample. Animal hair samples from areas polluted by thermal power plants burning coal were taken and compared with hair samples from the animals living in relatively non-polluted control areas. The results show that animal hair samples from areas with higher level of pollution contain usually higher concentrations of toxic and essential elements as As, Co, Cr, Fe and Se. Muride rodents can be used for more detailed monitoring of environmental exposure than hare. Moreover, hair of common vole shows usually higher levels of contamination as compared with wood mouse, which could be explained by different compositions of feed. Animal hair has been shown to be a rather sensitive indicator of environmental exposure and INAA has proved to be a suitable analytical tool for this purpose.


Power Plant Essential Element Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis Environmental Exposure Thermal Power 
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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • I. Obrusník
    • 1
  • J. Paukert
    • 2
  1. 1.Nuclear Research InstituteŘež near Prague(Czechoslovakia)
  2. 2.Institute of Landscape Ecology of Czechoslovak Academy of SciencesŘíčany near Prague(Czechoslovakia)

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