This study aims to determine heavy metal accumulation levels in the muscles tissues of two economically most
important demersal fish species in the Eastern Black Sea, Turkey, red mullet (Mullus barbatus) and whiting (Merlangius
merlangus), and evaluate the effects of fish species, sampling locations, fishing season and size groups on heavy metal
accumulation levels. Chromium (Cr), manganese (Mn), cobalt (Co), nickel (Ni), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), arsenic (As),
cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) concentrations in fish muscle samples were measured with Inductively Coupled Plasma
Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS). Co, Zn, As and Cd accumulation levels in both species differed significantly (P<0.05).
The metal concentrations of muscle tissues of both species, in general, were higher during summer and autumn. In the
study, the differences in concentrations levels of As and Pb in whiting, Co, Cu, and Pb in red mullet muscle tissues were
significantly related to fishing locations. The results of metal concentrations were compared with various legal limits
such as Turkish Food Codex (TFC 2011), European Communities Commission Regulation (EC 2006) and Food and
Agriculture Organization (FAO 1983) and the obtained metal levels of fish muscle tissues of both species were found to
be below the limit values which are a threat to human health.
Bu çalışmada, Doğu Karadeniz’de (Türkiye) ekonomik öneme sahip en önemli iki demersal balık türü olan barbunya ve mezgit balıklarındaki ağır metal birikim düzeylerinin tespit edilmesi ve metal birikim düzeylerinin balık türü, örnekleme1. IntroductionMetals are among the most detrimental elemental contaminants in aquatic ecosystems due to their toxic effects and accumulation by entering the food chain (Tepe 2009; Boran & Altinok 2010). Some elements such as iron (Fe), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), manganese (Mn) and selenium (Se) are considered as essential for their important roles in biological systems and nickel (Ni), vanadium (V), cobalt (Co) are known as probably essential metals. Such metals as lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd) and mercury (Hg) are non-essential metals and even very low amounts of these metals may have toxic effects (Canlı & Atlı 2003; Tüzen 2003; Uluozlu et al 2007; Turan et al 2009; Mendil et al 2010; Özden et al 2010). Industrial wastes, mining activities and marine sediment geochemical structure are potential sources of heavy metals affecting aquatic ecosystem (Balkıs et al 2007; Mendil et al 2010; Alkan et al 2012). Fish, major components of aquatic ecosystems, are protein-rich foodstuffs (Fındık & Çiçek 2011) containing high amounts of unsaturated fatty acids. Moreover, they are very important both economically and ecologically due to their key roles in food webs dynamics. Fish accumulate heavy metals as they are in the upper levels of the food chain. Therefore, fish especially demersal fishes are used as indicators of ecosystem contamination in the monitoring programs for the determination of metal pollution in seas (Has-Schon et al 2008; Harmelin-Vivien et al 2009; Mendil et al 2010; Özden et al 2010; Alkan et al 2012). Red mullet yeri, avlanma dönemi ve boy grubu gibi faktörlerle ilişkilerinin ortaya konulması hedeflenmiştir. Balık kas dokularında krom (Cr), mangan (Mn), kobalt (Co), nikel (Ni), bakır (Cu), çinko (Zn), arsenik (As), kadmiyum (Cd) ve kurşun (Pb) derişimleri indüktif eşleşmiş plazma kütle spektrometresi (ICP-MS) ile ölçülmüştür. Barbunya ve mezgit balıklarının kas dokularındaki Co, Zn, As ve Cd birikim düzeyleri farklılığı istatistiksel olarak önemli bulunmuştur (P