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The effect of a dam on the copper accumulation in estuarine sediment and associated nematodes in a Mekong estuary
Nguyen Thi MY, Y.; Vanreusel, A.; Mevenkamp, L.; Laforce, B.; Lins, L.; Tran Thanh, T.; Nguyen Van, D.; Ngo Xuan, Q. (2022). The effect of a dam on the copper accumulation in estuarine sediment and associated nematodes in a Mekong estuary. Environ. Monit. Assess. 194(S2): 772.
In: Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. Kluwer: Dordrecht. ISSN 0167-6369; e-ISSN 1573-2959, meer
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Nguyen Thi MY, Y., meer
  • Vanreusel, A., meer
  • Mevenkamp, L., meer
  • Laforce, B., meer
  • Lins, L., meer
  • Tran Thanh, T.
  • Nguyen Van, D.
  • Ngo Xuan, Q., meer

    Dam construction across the main flow of an estuary can greatly contribute to a high accumulation of inorganic contaminants. However, it remains unknown to what extend externally available heavy metals are incorporated into biota living in those contaminated environments. In this study, the heavy metal copper was investigated both in the sediment and in the tissues of nematodes taken from the subtidal zone in the Ba Lai estuary where a dam is present, and compared with samples from the dam-free Ham Luong estuary, both part of the Mekong Delta. Samples were taken in the dry season of 2017 in four stations in the Ba Lai estuary with two stations in the downstream part from the dam and two upstream. Similar locations with respect to the distance were sampled in the dam-free estuary. The internal copper concentration in nematodes was measured by applying micro X-ray fluorescence. The results showed that both internal and sediment copper concentrations were different between the two estuaries and among estuarine sections. The highest copper concentration in nematodes was found in the upstream section of Ba Lai estuary where the greatest accumulation of sedimentary copper was observed, while the dammed downstream part was lowest in internal copper accumulation. Moreover, there was more variation in the copper levels between the two sections within the dammed estuary compared to those in Ham Luong. These observations might point to the contribution of the Ba Lai dam to the increase of copper contaminants in the benthic environment leading to accumulation in nematodes.

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