Concentrations of Hg, Cd, Cu, Zn, Fe and Mn in Deep Sea Benthic Fauna from the Southeastern Mediterranean Sea: A Comparison Study Between Fauna Collected at a Pristine Area and at Two Waste Disposal Sites
Concentrations of Hg, Cd, Cu, Zn, Fe, and Mn were determined in five deep sea benthic fauna species: Polycheles typhlops, Acanthephyra eximia, Aristeus antennatus (Crustacea), Bathypterois mediterraneus, and Nezumia sclerorhynchus (Fish). Specimens were collected at two deep sea dump sites and at a deep sea control area in the southeastern Mediterranean sea, 1988-1995, within the framework of monitoring studies. Natural concentrations in the studied species were determined using specimens collected at a control site. The order of the natural metal concentrations found in the crustaceans was: Fe > Cu > Zn > Mn > Cd > Hg, while in the benthic fish the order was different: Fe > Zn > Mn > Cu > Hg =< Cd. Natural levels of Hg and Cd were high compared with the levels found in near shore species, probably as a result of specific feeding habits and physiological metal regulation of each species. Specimens collected at the dump sites were used as biomonitors to assess the impact of waste dumping operations. Comparison of results to the natural metal levels showed some significant differences among the sites, but no systematic trends. Rank score analysis based on metal contents of the fauna gave the lowest sum of scores to the control site, indicating probable effect of the disposal operations.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.