Coaccumulation of cadmium and zinc in tissues of sentinel mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) using a former dredge-disposal impoundment

J. M. Levengood, L. M. Skowron

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Six- to eight-month-old female farm-raised mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) were used to examine the accumulation of and association among cadmium (Cd), zinc (Zn), and copper (Cu) from an impoundment constructed to contain sediments dredged from a lake contaminated by a zinc smelter. Cd was not detectable in the livers t of farm-raised mallards (day 0), although sentinel mallards accumulated hepatic Cd in the first 7 days after release. By day 14, mean concentrations of Cd in kidneys (= 2.82 mg/kg wet weight) had increased 3.4-fold. The mean pancreatic Cd concentration increased 59% between days 7 and 14. Renal Zn increased nominally, whereas pancreatic Zn increased 63% in sentinel ducks after release. Hepatic Zn increased significantly in the first week of release. Renal and pancreatic Cu concentrations did not change significantly, whereas concentrations of Cu in livers of ducks increased 50% in the 7 days after release before decreasing by nearly the same degree. Concentrations of Cd and Zn were correlated in livers of sentinel mallards on days 7 and 14. Cd and Cu were not correlated in the tissues of any cohort. Cu and Zn were correlated in the livers of farm-raised mallards, in the pancreases of sentinel mallards at day 7, and in the kidneys of the ducks in all three treatments. The relationship between Cd and Zn in tissues of ducks in our study was complicated by simultaneous exposure to increased and heterogeneous concentrations of Cd and Zn, both of which can induce metallothionein and compete for this and other ligands.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)281-286
Number of pages6
JournalArchives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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