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Trophic relationships and mercury biomagnification in Brazilian tropical coastal food webs
Bisi, T.L.; Lepoint, G.; Azevedo, A.D.; Dorneles, P.R.; Flache, L.; Das, K.; Malm, O.; Lailson-Brito, J. (2012). Trophic relationships and mercury biomagnification in Brazilian tropical coastal food webs. Ecol. Indic. 18: 291-302.
In: Ecological Indicators. Elsevier: Shannon. ISSN 1470-160X, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 279316 [ OMA ]

    Sotalia guianensis (Van Beneden, 1864) [WoRMS]; Marine
Author keywords
    Tropical ecosystems; Food web; Stable isotope; Heavy metal;Bioaccumulation; Guiana dolphin

Authors  Top 
  • Bisi, T.L.
  • Lepoint, G., more
  • Azevedo, A.D.
  • Dorneles, P.R.
  • Flache, L.
  • Das, K., more
  • Malm, O.
  • Lailson-Brito, J.

    The present study investigated trophic relationships and mercury flow through food webs of three tropical coastal ecosystems: Guanabara, Sepetiba and Ilha Grande bays. The investigation was carried out through carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes (d13C, d15N) and total mercury (THg) determination in muscle from 35 species, including crustacean, cephalopod, fish and dolphin species. Detritivorous species showed the lowest average d15N values in all bays. These species were 13C enriched in Sepetiba and Ilha Grande bays, suggesting the presence of 13C enriched macroalgae in their diet. The highest mean d15N values were found in fish and benthic invertebrate feeders, as well as in species presenting demerso-pelagic feeding habit. The carbon and nitrogen isotopic findings showed different trophic relationship in food webs from Sepetiba, Guanabara and Ilha Grande bays. Guanabara Bay showed to be depleted in d15N compared to both Sepetiba and Ilha Grande bays. The latter finding suggests substantial contribution of atmospheric nitrogen fixation by cyanobacteria. A positive linear relationship was found between log THg concentrations and d15N values for Guanabara and Ilha Grande bays, but not for Sepetiba Bay. Our findings showed trophic magnification factors (TMF) above 1, demonstrating that THg is being biomagnified up the food chains in Rio de Janeiro bays.

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