Skip to main content

Assessment of Total Mercury Levels in Clarias gariepinus from the Sagua la Grande River, Cuba

Abstract

Total mercury levels (Thg) were quantified in Clarias gariepinus captured from the Sagua la Grande River (Cuba) in the vicinity of an active chlor–alkali plant, and relationships among place of capture; fish size, weight, and sex; and THg levels were assessed. THg levels ranged from 67 to 375 ng/g ww in collected fish, never exceeding the Cuban recommended maximum limit for fish consumption of 500 ng/g ww. No significant correlation was observed between mercury levels and fish allometric characteristics (p < 0.05); however, levels were significantly higher in fish captured below the chlor–alkali facility, suggesting a connection between mercury bioaccumulation and plant discharges.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4

References

  • Beckvar N, Salazar S, Salazar M, Finkelstein (2000) An in situ assessment of mercury contamination of Sudbury River, Massachusetts, using transplanted freshwater mussels (Elliptio complanata). Can J Fish Aqua Sci 57:1103–1112. doi:10.1139/cjfas-57-5-1103

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Bloom NS (1992) On the chemical form of mercury in edible fish and marine invertebrate tissue. Can J Fish Aqua Sci 49:1010–1017. doi:10.1139/f92-113

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Boudou A, Ribeyre F (1997) Mercury in the food web: accumulation and transfer mechanisms. In: Sigel A, Sigel H (eds) Metal ions in biological systems, mercury and its effects on environment and biology. Marcel Dekker, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Bruton MN (1979) The food and feeding behaviour of Clarias gariepinus (Pisces: Clariidae) in Lake Sibaya, South Africa, with emphasis on its role as a predator of cichlids. Trans Zool Soc London 35:47–114

    Google Scholar 

  • Campbell LM, Dixon DG, Hecky RE (2003) A review of mercury in Lake Victoria, East Africa: implications for human and ecosystem health. J Toxicol Environ Health B 6:325–356

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment (1999) Canadian Environmental Quality Guidelines (PN 1299). CCME, Winnipeg, Canada

    Google Scholar 

  • Clay D (1979) Population biology, growth and feeding of African catfish (Clarias gariepinus) with special reference to juveniles and their importance in fish culture. Arch Hydrobiol 87:453–482

    Google Scholar 

  • Cuban National Bureau of Standards (2006) Metallic contaminant in foods—Sanitary regulations (NC 493). Ministry of Science, Havana, Cuba

    Google Scholar 

  • Environment Canada (2002) Canadian tissue residue guidelines for the protection of wildlife consumers of aquatic biota: methylmercury. National Guidelines and Standard Office, Ottawa, Canada

    Google Scholar 

  • European Committee for Standardization (2001) Foodstuffs-Determination of trace elements—Pressure digestion (EN 13805). European Committee for Standardization, Brussels, Belgium

    Google Scholar 

  • European Economic Community (2001) Commission regulation (EC) No. 466/2001. Official Journal of the European Communities. European Economic Community, Brussels, Belgium

    Google Scholar 

  • Garcia H, del Valle A (2006) Who is to bell the cat? Juventud Rebelde 22/1:4–5

    Google Scholar 

  • Gonzalez H (1991) Mercury pollution caused by a chlor–alkali plant. Water Air Soil Pollut 56:83–93. doi:10.1007/BF00342263

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Inskip MJ, Piotrowski JK (1985) Review of the health effects of methylmercury. J Appl Toxicol 5:113–133. doi:10.1002/jat.2550050302

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Miller NJ, Miller JC (2001) Statistic and chemometrics for analytical chemistry. Prentice Hall, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Nriagu JO (1979) Production and uses of mercury. In: Nriagu JO (ed) The biogeochemistry of mercury in the environment. Elsevier/North-Holland Biomedical Press, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • United States Environmental Protection Agency (1997) Mercury study report to Congress. Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards and Office of Research and Development, Washington, DC

    Google Scholar 

  • World Health Organization (1990) Environmental health criteria 101: methylmercury. Programme of Chemical Safety. World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgments

This research was supported by the Cuban Minister of Science, Technologies and Environment. Authors want to thank to CYTED 105PI0272 for the methodological assistance in THg analysis, especially Rosa Montoro and Dinoraz Vélez, and to the enthusiastic fishermen from Sagua la Grande City.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to D. W. Graham.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

De La Rosa, D., Lima, L., Olivares-Rieumont, S. et al. Assessment of Total Mercury Levels in Clarias gariepinus from the Sagua la Grande River, Cuba. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 82, 101–105 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00128-008-9568-5

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00128-008-9568-5

Keywords

  • Tropical rivers
  • Mercury
  • Clarias gariepinus
  • Bioaccumulation