Do animals that are higher on the food chain in the ocean have higher levels of mercury?



  1. 0 Votes

    Yes they do. Mercury stays in the body for quite a long time, and as marine animals eat more marine creatures at lower levels on the food chain the amount of mercury in their body accumulates. This is particularly bad, as people generally prefer fish that is higher on the food chain, and therefore more likely to be contaminated, such as tuna and bass. this is also one of the reasons why dolphin fishing as depicted in the movie “The Cove” is troublesome: dolphins feed at the same levels as humans do, and their bodies are often lousy with mercury. When people eat dolphin they can get several thousand times the safe dose of mercury.

  2. 0 Votes

    Yes.  This is because mercury is a heavy metal which undergoes biomagnification through the food chain and is stored in fat.  This means that small animals have small amounts of mercury and as you move up the food chain each level has a larger amount of mercury or other substance.  This phenomenon also happens with: mercury, copper, cadmium, chromium, lead, nickel, zinc, tin (TBT or tributyltin), PCB’s and cyanide.

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