Ernest E. Provost

Patterns Of Mercury Contamination In A Wintering Waterfowl Community

Mercury contamination levels were studied in several species of waterfowl wintering on a reactor cooling reservoir (Par Pond) of the u.s. Department of Energy's (U .S. D.O.E.) Savannah River Plant near Aiken, South Carolina. Samples from 177 American coots (Fulica americana) indicated that this species which is largely vegetarian on its wintering grounds, had lower levels of mercury accumulation than did 4 other aquatic species which were more carnivorous in their food habits. Coot feathers had the highest frequency (88.1 %) of detectable levels of mercury, and gut contents had the lowest...