Saltwater flotation for more efficient matrix separation of wetland macroinvertebrates does not affect total mercury or methylmercury concentrations


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The authors compared benthic wetland invertebrate matrix separation techniques (handpicking vs saltwater flotation) to test for effects on invertebrate mercury concentrations. Neither total mercury nor methylmercury concentrations differed significantly between techniques across 8 taxa. Matrix separation by the flotation technique took significantly less time and resulted in significantly greater abundance recovery in some taxa. The authors conclude that the saltwater-based flotation technique does not lead to mercury contamination or analytical interference issues. Environ Toxicol Chem 2013;32:1233–1236. © 2013 SETAC