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J Environ Sci Health A Tox Hazard Subst Environ Eng. 2014;49(2):187-92. doi: 10.1080/10934529.2013.838869.

Copper use and accumulation in catfish culture in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam.

Author information

1
a Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences , Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen , Frederiksberg , Denmark.

Abstract

Aquaculture of Pangasius hypophthalmus (striped catfish) in Vietnam reached 1.1 million tonnes in 2011 and catfish fillets are exported worldwide. The intensive cultures of catfish mainly in earth ponds have made it necessary to apply CuSO4 and other chemicals to control external parasites and other pathogens. However, accumulation of Cu in aquaculture ponds may pose a hazard to growth of fish or to the aquatic environment. The aim of this study was to determine accumulation of Cu in sediment, water and fish in a catfish pond with a history of repeated treatment with CuSO4 in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam. Copper concentrations in pond sediment were in the interval 21.3-45.7 mg kg(-1) dw and did not exceed the Vietnamese values for soil to be used for agricultural production (70 mg kg(-1) dw.). During three samplings the total mean concentration of Cu in pond water (4 μg L(-1)) did not exceed the LC50-value (70 μg L(-1)) for catfish and the mean dissolved concentration of Cu (0.986 μg L(-1)) did not seem to constitute a risk for the stability of the aquatic ecosystem. No significant variation in Cu concentrations between sampling sites in the pond and depth of sediment profile were determined. The accumulation of Cu in catfish was highest in the liver compared to the skin, gills and muscle tissue. With the current practice of removing pond sludge three to four times during a production cycle little if any Cu seems to accumulate in catfish ponds despite repeated anti-parasite treatments with CuSO4. Further studies are needed to assess the eco-toxicity and impact on agricultural production when pond sediment is discharged into aquatic recipients and used as soil fertilizer.

PMID:
24171418
DOI:
10.1080/10934529.2013.838869
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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