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Baseline Concentrations of Trace Metals in Macroalgae from the Strait of Magellan, Chile

Abstract

Samples of four different species of seaweed were collected monthly between October 2000 and March 2001 from the coast of the Strait of Magellan, Chile to establish baseline levels of trace metals (silver, total mercury, nickel, lead, antimony, vanadium and zinc) and to compare the accumulation capacity among species. The algae included in the study were Adenocystis utricularis (n = 15); Enteromorpha sp. (n = 11), Mazzaella laminarioides (n = 12) and Porphyra columbina (n = 6). The concentration range of each metal in μg g−1 dry weight varied as follows: Ag = ND-0.3, Hg = ND-0.02, Ni = ND-12.6, Pb = ND-11.2, Sb = ND-1.97, V = ND-11.34 and Zn = 14.10-79. Results showed that levels of Ag, Hg, Ni, Pb, Sb, V and Zn for all species were similar to those found in other studies for non-contaminated areas with very little influence from anthropogenic activity. Also among the four species studied macroalgae Enteromorpha sp. had the highest capacity for metal accumulation and could therefore be considered as a biomonitor for future studies in the area.

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Acknowledgments

The authors acknowledge financial support from the Education Ministry of Chile; Project Mineduc-Acuicultura and Dr. Andres Mansilla and Mr. Nelso Navarro for their contributions with the algae identification.

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Correspondence to Mª. Soledad Astorga-España.

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Astorga-España, M.S., Calisto-Ulloa, N.C. & Guerrero, S. Baseline Concentrations of Trace Metals in Macroalgae from the Strait of Magellan, Chile. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 80, 97–101 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00128-007-9323-3

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Keywords

  • Bioindicators
  • Metals
  • Macroalgae
  • Trace elements