Pacific oysters ( Crassostrea gigas ) collected on the coast of British Columbia, Canada have occasionally shown cadmium (Cd) concentrations at or above 2 μg g − 1 (wet weight), which has resulted in the loss of some international markets. This study investigated the source and transfer of Cd to oysters by focusing on the role of dissolved and particulate Cd in seawater. Parameters monitored for 1 year at two oyster farm sites on Vancouver Island included: oyster tissue mass and shell length, Cd in oysters, dissolved Cd, particulate Cd, temperature and salinity. Results show that dissolved Cd was the main source of Cd to the oysters and that Cd was mainly concentrated in the gut tissues. A seasonal trend was observed in Cd in oysters, in which levels were lowest during periods of higher temperatures. Results also indicate that the local oceanographic inputs and sediment diagenesis directly affect dissolved Cd and thereby influence the Cd levels in oysters. Particulate matter was not found to be a source of Cd in oysters, and was actually negatively correlated. This was likely due to the uptake of dissolved Cd by phytoplankton and the effect of phytoplankton on oyster tissue mass.
Science of the Total Environment – Elsevier
Published: Apr 15, 2008
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