Faculty Advisor

Dr. Kyle Grice


In order to study the capacity of bivalve shells as bioindicators in estuarine ecosystems, a comparative analysis of lead concentration in oyster (C.angulata) and clam (C. edule) shells collected near the coast of Cádiz, Spain was performed. Infrared spectroscopy was used to assess calcite and aragonite compositional differences in the shells. An atomic absorption spectrometer was employed for lead concentation method development and analysis. Infrared spectroscopy results found that C. edule shells may contain more aragonite than C.angulata shells. The average lead concentration in oyster shells was calculated to be 44 ± 24 ppm from one site 17 ± 8 ppm from a second site. Clam shells collected from a third site were found to have concentrations of 43 ± 10 ppm. Further work is needed to determine relationships between lead accumulation in various species and anthropogenic pollution.