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Title: The occurrence of heavy metals in marine organisms and sediments of the South Wales coast
Author: Al-Hashimi, A. H.
Awarding Body: University College of Swansea
Current Institution: Swansea University
Date of Award: 1979
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A study was undertaken of the occurrence and seasonal variation in the levels of zinc, cadmium and copper in the limpet Patella vulgata and green algae Enteromorpha spp., collected from Mumbles Head and Oxwich Point along the south Gower coast, S. Wales, U.K. Metal concentrations in limpets showed significant regional variation. Levels of zinc and copper in organisms collected from Mumbles, from different levels on the intertidal zone during the study period, are higher than those from Oxwich. This is not significant for cadmium. Apparent zonal variations occur regarding size and the concentration of zinc and cadmium, but not copper. Both animal weight and metal concentration showed significant seasonal variation. Minimum weight is associated with the breeding period. A drop in zinc concentration correlated with breeding activity. The highest zinc concentrations were found in the smallest limpets but cadmium and copper were found to be cumulative. Limpets were found to accumulate different metals unevenly in different organs. Zinc was found to increase before and during gonadal development and decrease after spawning. Cadmium in the gonad, digestive gland and food of limpets collected from Oxwich is higher than in those from Mumbles. An attempt was made to attribute this to cadmium concentration in green algae and/or sediments. Analysis of Enteromorpha collected from the same sites showed that levels of zinc and copper in algae from Mumbles are higher than those from Oxwich, with no significant variation in cadmium. Fluctuation in metal concentrations of algae were parallel to those in some organs of limpets. Intertidal and sublittoral sediment samples from Oxwich and Port Eynon Bays, plus sublittoral samples from the area off the south Gower coast, underwent analysis for zinc, cadmium, copper, nickel and lead. Beach sediments were found to contain low concentrations of zinc, nickel and lead and are free from cadmium and copper. Sublittoral sediments can be considered unpolluted in comparison with sediments from other areas.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available