Biological and ecological factors related to trace element levels in harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) from European waters

Type Article
Date 2007-09
Language English
Author(s) Lahaye V11, Bustamante Paco1, Law J.R2, Learmonth J.A3, Santos M.B.3, 4, Boon J.P.5, Rogan E6, Dabin W7, Addink M.J.8, Lopez A9, Zuur A.F.10, Pierce G.J.3, Caurant Florence1
Affiliation(s) 1 : Univ La Rochelle, IFREMER, CNRS, UMR 6217,Ctr Rech Ecosyst Littoraux Anthropises, F-17042 La Rochelle, France.
2 : Ctr Environm Fisheries & Aquat Sci, Burnham Lab, Burnham On Crouch CM0 8HA, Essex, England.
3 : Univ Aberdeen, Sch Biol Sci, Aberdeen ABZ4 2TZ, Scotland.
4 : Inst Espanol Oceanog, Ctr Oceanog Vigo, Vigo 36200, Spain.
5 : Royal Netherlands Inst Sea Res, NL-1790 AB Den Burg, Netherlands.
6 : Natl Univ Ireland Univ Coll Cork, Dept Zool Ecol & Plant Sci, Aquaculture Dev Ctr, Cork, Ireland.
7 : Ctr Rech Mammiferes Marins, Inst Littoral & Environm, F-17000 La Rochelle, France.
8 : Museum Natl Hist Nat, NL-2300 RA Leiden, Netherlands.
9 : CEMMA, Gondomar 36380, Pontevedra, Spain.
10 : Highland Stat, Newburgh AB41 6FN, Aberdeen, Scotland.
Source Marine Environmental Research (0141-1136) (Elsevier), 2007-09 , Vol. 64 , N. 3 , P. 247-266
DOI 10.1016/j.marenvres.2007.01.005
WOS© Times Cited 29
Keyword(s) Tracers, Multivariate analysis, Diet, Age, Marine mammals, Zinc, Cadmium, Mercury, Heavy metals
Abstract Selected trace elements (Cd, Cu, Hg, Se, Zn) were measured in the kidneys and the liver of 104 harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) stranded along the coasts of France, Galicia (Spain), Ireland, Scotland (UK), and the Netherlands. Generally, relatively low concentrations of toxic elements were encountered in the tissues of European porpoises, except for two individuals, which displayed high hepatic Hg concentrations. Also, elevated Cd levels obtained in Scottish porpoises could be related to their feeding preferences and this result suggests an increase of the proportion of cephalopods in their diet with latitude. Moreover, significant geographical differences were seen in hepatic Zn concentrations; the elevated Zn concentrations displayed by porpoises from the Netherlands may relate their poor health status. Variation in metal concentrations within porpoises from the North Sea is likely to reflect a long-term segregation between animals from northern (Scotland) and southern areas (the Netherlands), making trace elements powerful ecological tracers. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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Lahaye V, Bustamante Paco, Law J.R, Learmonth J.A, Santos M.B., Boon J.P., Rogan E, Dabin W, Addink M.J., Lopez A, Zuur A.F., Pierce G.J., Caurant Florence (2007). Biological and ecological factors related to trace element levels in harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) from European waters. Marine Environmental Research, 64(3), 247-266. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :