An Assessment of the Potential for Selenium to Impair Reproduction in Bull Trout, Salvelinus confluentus, from an Area of Active Coal Mining
Authors: Palace, Vince; Baron, Christopher; Evans, Robert; Holm, Jodi; Kollar, Suzanne; Wautier, Kerry; Werner, Jeffrey; Siwik, Paula; Sterling, George; Johnson, Craig
Source: Environmental Biology of Fishes, Volume 70, Number 2, June 2004 , pp. 169-174(6)
Abstract:Selenium (Se) is an essential nutrient, but in higher concentrations can reduce recruitment in fish populations by increasing rates of deformities during early development. Recent work has identified elevated levels of Se in water and biota collected downstream from coal mining activity in Alberta's northeast slopes region. We also recently identified increased incidence of terata and edema in rainbow trout and brook trout with elevated tissue Se from this area. However, there is currently no information regarding the potential for Se to contribute to declining stocks of bull trout, a species of concern in the area. The present study provides an assessment of the potential for Se to contribute to low recruitment in bull trout downstream from coal mining activity. Non-destructive muscle biopsy sampling and a sensitive atomic fluorescence analysis technique are used to determine Se. Results indicate that most bull trout (>90%) captured immediately downstream from coal mining activity in the region have concentrations of Se that would be expected to impair recruitment. Additional work is required to determine the extent of Se's contribution to low recruitment in bull trout.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Publication date: June 1, 2004