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Assessment of Heavy Metal Pollution in the Water, Sediment and Fish during a Complete Breeding Cycle in the Pond of the Pearl River Delta, China

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Document pages: 22 pages

Abstract: The paper aimed to investigate the concentration variations and evaluate the bioaccumulation as well as the health risk of Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Cd and Pb in the aquaculture pond ecosystem during a complete breeding cycle. The samples of water, sediment and aquatic organisms were collected from the pond of gull island in the Pearl River Delta, China. In the breeding cycle, the results revealed the metal concentration in the water increased, while the sediment metal concentration showed no significant difference. The heavy metal concentrations in the water were higher than the background values (December 2017) which related to the input of feeds. Sediment metal concentrations (Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, As and Cd) in the sediment were higher than the background values of Guangdong Province, China, indicating these metal pollutions came from anthropogenic activities. While the concentration of Pb was comparable to the background value, implying that the Pb was mainly from the earth crust. In addition, various metals showed different affinity to fish organs (muscle, skin, bladder, gill, heart, kidney and liver). Zinc was abundant in skin, while As and Cd concentrations were highest in kidneys; Cu was accumulated highest in liver; Cr concentrations was highest in hearts; and Ni was mainly found in bladders, and the Pb was most commonly found in gills. The distribution of heavy metals in the tissues organs was in the sequence of: Zn > Cu > Cr > Ni > Pb > As > Cd. As the fish ages, the Cu and Zn concentration in tissue organs declined, while the Cr, Ni, As, Cd and Pb increased slightly. Estimations of health risks showed no evidence of potential threats to consumers.

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