Concentration of 137Cs and 40K in meat of omnivore and herbivore game species in mountain forest ecosystems of Gorski Kotar, Croatia
The aim of this study was to investigate 137Cs and 40K load in large mammal game species in the mountain forest region of Gorski Kotar in Croatia approximately a quarter of century after the Chernobyl accident. 137Cs and 40K activity were determined by the gamma-spectrometric method in 49 meat samples of five large game species: brown bear (Ursus arctos), wild boar (Sus scrofa), roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), red deer (Cervus elaphus), and chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra). The results indicated that herbivore game species (roe deer, red deer and chamois) show significantly lower 137Cs concentrations than omnivore species (brown bear, wild boar), thereby confirming the hypothesis that different dietary strategy impact caesium concentrations in meat. The measured caesium load in brown bear meat was in the range of two orders of magnitude, while caesium load in wild boar meat was found in the range of one order of magnitude. The estimated effective equivalent dose showed that uptake of the highest caesium doses would be from consumption of omnivore species meat, while much lower doses could be taken in with the consumption of meat from herbivore species.
KeywordsGame meat 137Cs 40K Omnivore Herbivore Mountain forest ecosystem
We would like to thank Alen Ružić from the Šafar butcher shop and members of the hunting clubs “Tetrijeb Delnice” (especially Robert Gec), “Divokoza Brod na Kupi” (especially Robert Abramović) and “Vidra Turke” (especially Mladen Mauhar) for their invaluable assistance in providing samples. This study was partly supported by Project no. 098-0982934-2713 of the Ministry of Science, Education and Sport. Finally, thanks to anonymous reviewers and editor for their expertise which significantly contributed to improve the quality of the manuscript.
- 1.Anonymous (2010) Ordinance on hunting season. Official Gazette of Republic Croatia 67/10. (in Croatian)Google Scholar
- 2.Anonymous (2012) Ministry of Agriculture, Informattion system of Central Hunting Records. http://lovistarh.mrrsvg.hr/sle/login.aspx?ReturnUrl=%2fsle%2fdefault.aspx. Accessed Jan 2012)
- 5.Boitani L, Mattei L (1992) Aging wild boar by tooth eruption. In: Proceedings of the International Conference Ongulés/Ungulates 91, Paris–Toulouse, France, p 419–421Google Scholar
- 7.Degmečić D, Krapinec K, Florijančić T (2009) Factors that determine sex of red deer calves (Cervus elaphus L.): verification of current knowledge. Šumarski List 133:279–287Google Scholar
- 10.Ekker M, Jenssen BM, Zahlsen K (1990) Radiocesium in Norwegian carnivores following the Chernobyl fallout. In: Myrberget S (ed) Population dynamics. Transactions of the XIXth IUGB Congress, Trondheim, Norway, September 1989 (The International Union of Game Biologists), vol 1, p 275Google Scholar
- 13.IAEA (1996) International Atomic Energy Agency safety standards series, vol 115. IAEA, ViennaGoogle Scholar
- 19.MathWorks© (2010) Matlab product documentation. http://www.mathworks.com/help/techdoc/?s_cid=ML2010_bb_doc. Accessed 6 Mar 2012
- 22.Palo RT, White N, Danell K (2003) Spatial and temporal variations of Cs-137 in moose Alces alces and transfer to man in northern Sweden. Wildl Biol 9:207–212Google Scholar
- 23.Pourcelot L, Renaud P, Louvat D, Gurriaran R, Richon P (2003) Influence of hot spots on cesium-137 contamination of an alpine food chain and doses associated with it. Environnement, Risques & Santé 2:112–120Google Scholar
- 25.Rissanen K, Rahola T, Illukka E, Alfthan A (1987) Radioactivity of reindeer, game and fish in Finnish Lapland after the Chernobyl accident in 1986. Report STUKA 63. Radiation and Nuclear Authority, Helsinki, p 33Google Scholar
- 30.Swenson JE, Sandegren F, Söderberg A, Franzén R (1995) Estimating the total weight of Scandinavian brown bears from field-dressed and slaughter weights. Wildl Biol 1:177–179Google Scholar
- 31.Šprem N, Piria M, Novosel H, Florijančić T, Antunović B, Treer T (2011) Morphological variability of the Croatian wild boar population. Šumarski List 135:575–583Google Scholar