Differences in mortality among bobwhite fed methylmercury chloride dissolved in various carriers



Twelve-day-old bobwhite chicks were fed a diet containing 0, 5.4 or 20 ppm methylmercury chloride. The methylmercury chloride was added to the diet either in a dry, pulverized form or dissolved in acetone, propylene glycol or corn oil. Mortality was measured for 6 weeks, and samples of liver were saved for mercury analysis. Mortality was significantly lower in birds fed 20 ppm methylmercury chloride when acetone was the solvent. The reduced mortality could not be explained by effects of acetone on dietary level of mercury or on uptake of mercury into the body.