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Assessment of persistent chemicals of concern in white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus) in the Hanford Reach of the Columbia River, southeastern Washington, 2009

June 28, 2022

White sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus) are long-lived, late-maturing, benthic-feeding fish that are ideal candidates for assessing the bioaccumulation of persistent chemicals. In this study, composite tissue samples of brain, liver, gonad, and fillet were collected from white sturgeon in 2009 from five sites in the Hanford Reach of the Columbia River near Hanford, Washington. The composite tissue samples at each site were analyzed for the concentrations of individual chemicals as well as the total concentrations of four chemical classes: (1) organochlorine (OC) pesticides, (2) industrial or personal care products, (3) polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) congeners, and (4) polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) congeners. The results showed that chemicals from all four classes were present in the fish, and that OC pesticides and degradation products (such as oxychlordane, fipronil sulfide, and dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) degradates, PBDE congeners, and PCB congeners) often were present in all tissues and at all sites. Gonad tissues generally had the highest total concentration of each chemical class, followed by brains, livers, and fillets. The concentrations of several chemicals or chemical classes exceeded many of the human health benchmarks for two different populations (general/recreational consumers and subsistence/Tribal consumers), and this was especially true for the total concentrations of DDT degradation products and PCB congeners. These results suggest that continued monitoring of resident fish in the Hanford Reach, as well as assessments of the health impacts on consumers of those fish, are warranted.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2022
Title Assessment of persistent chemicals of concern in white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus) in the Hanford Reach of the Columbia River, southeastern Washington, 2009
DOI 10.3133/sir20225020
Authors Sean E. Payne, Daniel R. Wise, Jay W. Davis, Elena B. Nilsen
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Scientific Investigations Report
Series Number 2022-5020
Index ID sir20225020
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Oregon Water Science Center