Distribution of Cd, Pb, As and Hg in Oyster Tissue, Sediment and Water in Lingayen Gulf, Philippines

  • Reivin T. Vinarao
  • Gielenny M. Salem
  • Rosario J. Ragaza


Oyster, sediment and water samples were collected from 12 stations along Lingayen Gulf and its tributary waters. This study aims to establish baseline information on metal levels of Cadmium (Cd), Lead (Pb), Arsenic (As) and Mercury (Hg) in oyster tissues as they relate to concentrations in the water column and sediment of Lingayen Gulf. The metal levels were determined using atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS) and inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES). Significant levels (p < 0.05) of Cd (upper limit: 1.50 mg/kg) and Pb (one station: 0.55 mg/kg) were detected in oysters in both pre-monsoon and monsoon seasons exceeding the regulatory limit set by BFAR-Philippines (0.50 mg/kg) that is safe for human consumption. Higher levels of Pb (upper limit: 33.90 mg/kg), As (upper limit: 6.50 mg/kg) and Hg (upper limit: 0.30 mg/kg) were deposited mainly in the sediments and found to behave in the following trend: Pb > As > Hg. Although levels of As and Pb were detected in sediment, uptake of these metals varied depending on season and location. No Hg was detected in oyster tissues and water column. Possible factors of metal contaminations were temporal variations and physiological capability of oysters to bind with metal species. Anthropogenic activities by local and surrounding communities may also contribute to the heavy metal loads of Lingayen Gulf.


Heavy Metal Monsoon Season American Public Health Association Heavy Metal Analysis Oyster Tissue 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors extend their sincerest gratitude to Dr. Demian Willette of the Old Dominion University ctPIRE Project for reviewing and giving invaluable comments to the paper. Our gratitude is also extended to Undersecretary Segfredo R. Serrano of the Policy, Planning, Research and Development and Regulation, Department of Agriculture (DA); Director Nicomedes P. Elleazar, DA-Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR); Hon. Leopoldo N. Bataoil, House of Representative, 2nd District of Pangasinan and FAO for the partial travel grants to the first author’s attendance to the 8th ICMSS held at Prince Edward Island, Canada. We also express our appreciation to Dr. Westly R. Rosario of the DA-Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), National Integrated Fisheries Technology Development Center (NIFTDC) for his initiatory efforts in conceptualizing this research; Ms. Adoracion V. Obinque and Ms. Virginia Delos Santos in assisting the researchers in sample collection and to Mr. Arvin Joseph M. Dimaano, DA-National Fisheries Research and Development Institute for doing some of the figures. This study was supported by the research fund of the National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Philippines.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Reivin T. Vinarao
    • 1
  • Gielenny M. Salem
    • 1
  • Rosario J. Ragaza
    • 1
  1. 1.Post Harvest Research and Development DivisionNational Fisheries Research and Development InstituteQuezon CityPhilippines

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