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Balanus amphitrite (Cirripedia: Thoracica) - A potential indicator of fluoride, copper, lead, chromium and mercury in North Adriatic lagoons
Barbaro, A.; Francescon, A.; Polo, B.; Bilio, M. (1978). Balanus amphitrite (Cirripedia: Thoracica) - A potential indicator of fluoride, copper, lead, chromium and mercury in North Adriatic lagoons. Mar. Biol. (Berl.) 46(3): 247-257
In: Marine Biology. Springer: Heidelberg; Berlin. ISSN 0025-3162, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Barbaro, A.
  • Francescon, A.
  • Polo, B.
  • Bilio, M.

Abstract
    The capacity of the barnacle Balanus amphitrite Darwin to accumulate pollutants above ambient levels was examined in two North Adriatic lagoons with respect to fluoride, copper, lead, chromium and mercury. Levels in soft tissues ranged from 138 to 312 ppm (dry weight) for fluoride, 41 to 109 ppm for copper, 7.1 to 11.7 ppm for lead, 2.10 to 3.89 ppm for chromium, and from 0.96 to 1.35 ppm for mercury. The concentration factor was of the order of 102 for fluoride, 103 for copper, and possibly higher than 103 for lead, chromium and mercury. The differences of about 2:1 in the fluoride and copper concentrations in the waters of the two lagoons were clearly reflected by the levels in the barnacles. B. amphitrite that had set on experimental panels had levels similar to those found in specimens collected from long-term "natural" populations as early as 42 days after immersion of the panels. Compared with literature data, the accumulation levels found in B. amphitrite for fluoride were among the highest known for invertebrates; the values for copper and lead were considerable, but exceeded by others published for B. balanoides; the results for chromium and mercury were one order of magnitude lower than values reported for other suspension-feeders or indicator organisms. B. amphitrite appears to possess most of the properties considered essential for a biological indicator. Eventual determination of the response time of the barnacle to changes in environmental level could profitably be carried out utilizing experimental panels.

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