Presentation Title

Site-specific models of fish tissue mercury (Hg) concentrations to inform fish consumption guidelines

Presenter Information

Matthew LarreyFollow

Advisor Information

David Manning

Location

MBSC Dodge Room 302B - G

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Start Date

4-3-2022 12:30 PM

End Date

4-3-2022 1:45 PM

Abstract

Mercury, a highly toxic metal, is deposited onto land from the atomosphere through precipitation, and is passively transported into waterways. There, mercury can accumulate in fish tissue, and humans can be exposed through consuming contaminated fishes. Studies have found a variety of biological, chemical and physical factors influence the concentration of mercury in fish tissues, such as species identity, pH, and land use. Fish tissue mercury concentration data are regularly collected and made available through national databases, as are data on watershed land use and lake and stream parameters. We accessed publicly available fish tissue mercury data for the Upper Midwest (NE, SD, MN, KS, MO, and IA), and linked them to watershed characteristics such as land use. We used mixed effect regression analysis and model selection approaches to understand the parameters that contribute to fish tissue mercury concentrations. Our aim was to build a model to inform fish consumption decisions in the Upper Midwest. Preliminary results showed that fish tissue mercury depended on species identity foremost and secondarily on spatial variables (e.g., latitude, state). Presence of wetlands in the watershed increased fish tissue mercury concentration, but other land uses showed weaker relationships. Overall, our results emphasized the importance of species traits in predicting tissue mercury concentrations, whereas evidence was limited for watershed variables as predictors of fish contamination.

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Mar 4th, 12:30 PM Mar 4th, 1:45 PM

Site-specific models of fish tissue mercury (Hg) concentrations to inform fish consumption guidelines

MBSC Dodge Room 302B - G

Mercury, a highly toxic metal, is deposited onto land from the atomosphere through precipitation, and is passively transported into waterways. There, mercury can accumulate in fish tissue, and humans can be exposed through consuming contaminated fishes. Studies have found a variety of biological, chemical and physical factors influence the concentration of mercury in fish tissues, such as species identity, pH, and land use. Fish tissue mercury concentration data are regularly collected and made available through national databases, as are data on watershed land use and lake and stream parameters. We accessed publicly available fish tissue mercury data for the Upper Midwest (NE, SD, MN, KS, MO, and IA), and linked them to watershed characteristics such as land use. We used mixed effect regression analysis and model selection approaches to understand the parameters that contribute to fish tissue mercury concentrations. Our aim was to build a model to inform fish consumption decisions in the Upper Midwest. Preliminary results showed that fish tissue mercury depended on species identity foremost and secondarily on spatial variables (e.g., latitude, state). Presence of wetlands in the watershed increased fish tissue mercury concentration, but other land uses showed weaker relationships. Overall, our results emphasized the importance of species traits in predicting tissue mercury concentrations, whereas evidence was limited for watershed variables as predictors of fish contamination.