John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Mercury correlations among blood, muscle, and hair of northern elephant seals during the breeding and molting fasts

0
Mercury (Hg) biomonitoring and toxicological risk assessments for marine mammals commonly sample different tissues, making comparisons to toxicity benchmarks and among species and regions difficult. Few studies have examined how life history events, such as fasting, influence the relationship between total Hg (THg) concentrations in different tissues. We evaluated the relationships between THg concentrations in blood, muscle, and hair of female and male northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) at the start and end of the breeding and molting fasts. The relationships between tissues varied among tissue pairs and differed by sampling period and sex. Blood and muscle were generally related at all time periods; however, hair, an inert tissue, did not strongly represent the metabolically active tissues (blood and muscle) at all times of year. The strongest relationships between THg concentrations in hair and those in blood or muscle were observed during periods of active hair growth (end of the molting period) or during time periods when internal body conditions were similar to those when the hair was grown (end of the breeding fast). Our results indicate that THg concentrations in blood or muscle can be translated to the other tissue type using the equations we developed, but that THg concentrations in hair were generally a poor index of internal THg concentrations except during the end of fasting periods. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved

Customer comments

No comments were found for Mercury correlations among blood, muscle, and hair of northern elephant seals during the breeding and molting fasts. Be the first to comment!