Metal contamination in vertebrates from the Tjan-Shan mountains
AbstractMore than a half of the area of Kyrgyzstan is covered by high mountains. These receive air pollutants transported on long distances by general air circulation. In our study we collected and analysed bone samples from the Kyrgyz Mountains by XRF spectrophotometry. We found northern valleys to be the most contaminated. This might be due to contaminants coming probably from the north. Moreover, we found some western valleys contaminated too, which might be caused by western flows of general atmospheric circulation. We also found more polluted localities in higher altitudes and humid areas with a high level of precipitations. Analysing the occurrence of heavy metals in different parts of skeleton, we found out that they tend to be stored mostly in teeth. No significant correlation between a heavy metal bone compound and animal domestication was found. We discovered that concentrations of P, Ca, Fe, Zn, I and Sr are higher in domestic than in wild animals, which is probably due to their richer diet.
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