Contaminants in Queen Conch (Strombus gigas) in Vieques, Puerto Rico
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Contaminants in Queen Conch (Strombus gigas) in Vieques, Puerto Rico

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  • Source:
    Regional Studies in Marine Science, 5, 80-86.
Filetype[PDF-425.06 KB]

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  • Description:
    Pollution has the potential to negatively alter coastal ecosystem health, including fisheries species, through direct impacts, food web effects and habitat degradation. Vieques is an island municipality of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, which lies off the east coast of the main island. In addition to normal pollution stressors associated with human activities, Vieques was also the site of a military bombing range from the 1940s until 2003. There is significant local concern about potential negative impacts of pollution from these and other activities on fisheries stocks, as well as seafood as a vector for toxic contaminants to enter the human food supply. In this study, queen conch (Strombus gigas) tissues were analyzed for a suite of contaminants: metals, the pesticide DDT (and its degradation products), and energetic compounds (associated with munitions) from three areas around the island. The magnitude of contamination found in queen conch was within the range of values reported in other studies in the Caribbean, suggesting that the levels of these selected contaminants present in conch in Vieques are not unusual for the region.
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    Accepted Manuscript
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