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Contaminants investigation of the Guadalupe and San Antonio Rivers of Texas, 1992

The Guadalupe and San Antonio River Basins drain a combined area of 26,547 km2 (10,250 square miles), transporting wastewaters from agricultural, livestock, and mining operations, dumps, and urban, industrial, and domestic sources, ultimately discharging into the San Antonio Bay system.

Due to a need for baseline studies to assess both current conditions and to provide data for future comparisons, five species of fish were collected from four sites on the San Antonio River and five sites on the Guadalupe River from August to October 1992. Predatory fish from the upper reaches of the San Antonio River had elevated tissue concentrations of mercury up to 2.5 times the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service's (Service) National Contaminant Biomonitoring Program's (NCBP) 85th percentile of 0.17 ppm. Concentrations in predatory fish also exceeded the NCBP geometric mean for PCB's (0.39 ppm) and DDE (0.19 ppm) by up to ten times and six times, respectively. At three sites on the San Antonio River, copper exceeded the NCBP geometric mean of 1.0 ppm. On the Guadalupe River, PCB's and DDE exceeded the NCBP geometric mean by four and two times, respectively. Mercury exceeded the NCBP 85th percentile in predators at two sites and concentrations of copper in predators in the lower Guadalupe River were nearly twice the NCBP 85th percentile. Chromium concentrations in fish were present at levels of concern at several locations in both rivers. It is recommended that further sampling be conducted to determine sources of PCB's, DDE, mercury, and chromium in the San Antonio River south of San Antonio, and PCB's, chromium, copper, and mercury in the Guadalupe River.

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agINFRA The RING is part of the agINFRA project EC 7th framework program INFRA-2011-1.2.2 - Grant agr. no: 283770