Heavy metals in the hair of opossum from Palo Verde, Costa Rica

J. Burger, M. Marquez, M. Gochfeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Levels of lead, cadmium, mercury, chromium, and manganese were measured in the hair of opossum (Didelphis virginiana) from Palo Verde, Guanacaste, Costa Rica. This area has some agriculture, but is slated for extensive water development that will increase ecosystem exposure to a variety of agricultural chemicals. Metal levels were generally not inter-correlated except for chromium and lead, chromium and cadmium, and cadmium and lead. There were significant gender differences only for lead and chromium, with the significantly smaller females having higher levels. It is suggested that hair from mammals, particularly abundant ominivores may be useful, bioindicators of environmental quality over a long time period.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)472-476
Number of pages5
JournalArchives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 1994

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Toxicology
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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