Author(s): Cravo A, Foster P, Bebianno MJ
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Abstract Specimens of the limpet Patella aspera were collected from a clean, coastal marine site and a contaminated estuary on the south coast of Portugal. The shells were analysed individually for their minor (Mg, Sr) and trace element (Fe, Mn, Zn) content. Mean concentrations of these elements in the shell of P. aspera were 4651, 1318, 35.8, 29.9 and 5.5 microg g(-1), respectively. The elemental concentrations exhibited both a marked intra- and inter-population variability. Despite the variability within individual populations, significant differences in the trace element composition were apparent between the shells taken from the two sites. Small shells (< 2 g) provided the best resolution between sites for both manganese and iron. Differences in zinc were best resolved for larger shells. The shell of P. aspera has an extraordinarily high magnesium concentration, which is insensitive to gross salinity differences, and a trace metal assemblage that can be interpreted in terms of environmental exposure. On these grounds, it is recommended that the shell of P. aspera is a tissue for potential use in environmental trace metal monitoring.
This article was published in Environ Int
and referenced in Journal of Environmental & Analytical Toxicology