Mercury levels in raccoons (Procyon lotor) from the Warta Mouth National Park, Northwestern Poland.
This is the first report on mercury (Hg) levels in the liver, kidney, skeletal muscle, and brain of raccoon in Europe. It studied Hg concentration in 24 raccoons from the Warta Mouth National Park, northwestern Poland by atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS). The highest total Hg concentrations in the raccoon were found in the liver (maximum, 18.45 mg/kg dry weight), while the lowest in the brain (maximum, 0.49 mg/kg dw). In adult raccoons, Hg concentrations in the liver, kidney, and brain were higher than in immature individuals (p<0.001), while similar in skeletal muscle in both age groups. Our results are consistent with studies by other authors conducted in North America in areas with similar environmental conditions.