Spatial and temporal distribution of mercury and methylmercury in bivalves from the French coastline
Marine mercury (Hg) concentrations have been monitored in the French coastline for the last half a century using bivalves. The analyses presented in this study concerned 192 samples of bivalves (mussels: Mytilus edulis and Mytilus galloprovincialis and oysters: Crassostrea gigas and Isognomon alatus) from 77 sampling stations along the French coast and in the French Antilles sea. The goals of this study were to assess MeHg levels in various common bivalves from French coastline, and to identify possible geographic, taxonomic or temporal variations of concentrations. We show that the evolution of methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations covary with total mercury (HgT) concentrations. Moreover, in most of the study sites, HgT concentrations have not decreased since 1987, despite regulations to decrease or ban mercury used for anthropic activities.
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