David P Krabbenhoft

David P Krabbenhoft
United States Geological Survey | USGS · Wisconsin Water Science Center

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248
Publications
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Publications

Publications (248)
Article
Anoxic conditions within reservoirs related to thermal stratification and oxygen depletion lead to methylmercury (MeHg) production, a key process governing the uptake of mercury in aquatic food webs. Once formed within a reservoir, the timing and magnitude of the biological uptake of MeHg and the relative importance of MeHg export in water versus b...
Article
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Soils account for the largest global mercury reservoirs, but observations are sparse in many regions. The accumulation and turnover of mercury in soils determines whether they act as an atmospheric source or sink. Here, we present a spatial analysis of soil mercury from a large soil survey (three horizons, ∼4800 sites) across the conterminous Unite...
Article
Mercury (Hg) contamination has been a persistent concern in the Florida Everglades for over three decades due to elevated atmospheric deposition and the system's propensity for methylation and rapid bioaccumulation. Given declines in atmospheric Hg concentrations in the conterminous United States and efforts to mitigate nutrient release to the grea...
Article
Significance Russian rivers are the predominant source of riverine mercury to the Arctic Ocean, where methylmercury biomagnifies to high levels in food webs. Pollution controls are thought to have decreased late–20th-century mercury loading to Arctic watersheds, but there are no published long-term observations on mercury in Russian rivers. Here, w...
Article
Lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush), collected from 13 remote lakes located in southwestern Alaska, were analyzed for carbon, nitrogen, and mercury (Hg) stable isotope values to assess the importance of migrating oceanic salmon, volcanic activity, and atmospheric deposition to fish Hg burden. Methylmercury (MeHg) bioaccumulation in phytoplankton (5.0...
Article
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Anthropogenic releases of mercury (Hg)1–3 are a human health issue⁴ because the potent toxicant methylmercury (MeHg), formed primarily by microbial methylation of inorganic Hg in aquatic ecosystems, bioaccumulates to high concentrations in fish consumed by humans5,6. Predicting the efficacy of Hg pollution controls on fish MeHg concentrations is co...
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Climate change dramatically impacts Arctic and subarctic regions, inducing shifts in wetland nutrient regimes as a consequence of thawing permafrost. Altered hydrological regimes may drive changes in the dynamics of microbial mercury (Hg) methylation and bioavailability. Important knowledge gaps remain on the contribution of specific microbial grou...
Article
A prerequisite for environmental and toxicological applications of mercury (Hg) stable isotopes in wildlife and humans is quantifying the isotopic fractionation of biological reactions. Here, we measured stable Hg isotope values of relevant tissues of giant petrels (Macronectes spp.). Isotopic data were interpreted with published HR-XANES spectrosc...
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Mercury concentrations in the Laurentian Great Lakes waters are among the lowest reported in the literature, while game fish concentrations approach consumption advisory limits, particularly in Lakes Superior, Huron, and Michigan, indicating efficient methylmercury transfer from water to game fish. To determine if increased transfer efficiency is e...
Article
Forest soils are among the world’s largest repositories for long-term accumulation of atmospherically deposited mercury (Hg), and understanding the potential for remobilization through gaseous emissions, aqueous dissolution and runoff, or erosive particulate transport to down-gradient aquatic ecosystems is critically important for projecting ecosys...
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Gaseous elemental mercury observations were conducted at Churchill, Victoria, in Australia from April to July, 2013, using a Tekran 2537 analyzer. A strong diurnal variation with daytime average values of 1.2–1.3 ng m–3 and nighttime average values of 1.6–1.8 ng m–3 was observed. These values are significantly higher than the Southern Hemisphere av...
Article
Industrial chemical contamination within coastal regions of the Great Lakes can pose serious risks to wetland habitat and offshore fisheries, often resulting in fish consumption advisories that directly affect human and wildlife health. Mercury (Hg) is a contaminant of concern in many of these highly urbanized and industrialized coastal regions, on...
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Although anthropogenic mercury (Hg) releases to the environment have been substantially lowered in the United States and Canada since 1990, concerns remain for contamination in fish from remote lakes and rivers where atmospheric deposition is the predominant source of mercury. How have aquatic ecosystems responded? We report on one of the longest k...
Article
Past industrial use and subsequent release of mercury (Hg) into the environment have resulted in severe cases of legacy contamination that still influence contemporary Hg levels in biota. While the bioaccumulation of legacy Hg is commonly assessed via concentration measurements within fish tissue, this practice becomes difficult in regions of high...
Article
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Toxicity of methylmercury (MeHg) to wildlife and humans results from its binding to cysteine residues of proteins, forming MeHg-cysteinate (MeHgCys) complexes that hinder biological functions. MeHgCys complexes can be detoxified in vivo, yet how this occurs is unknown. We report that MeHgCys complexes are transformed into selenocysteinate [Hg(Sec)4...
Article
Atmospheric delivery of mercury (Hg) is important to the Upper Great Lakes, and understanding gaseous Hg exchange between surface water and air is critical to predicting the effects of declining mercury emissions. Speciated atmospheric Hg, dissolved gaseous Hg (DGM), and particulate and filter passing total Hg were measured on a cruise in Lake Mich...
Article
Mercury (Hg) methylation is a microbially mediated process that converts inorganic Hg into bioaccumulative, neurotoxic methylmercury (MeHg). The metabolic activity of methylating organisms is highly dependent on biogeochemical conditions, which subsequently influences MeHg production. However, our understanding of the ecophysiology of methylators i...
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The Florida Everglades has one of the most severe methylmercury (MeHg) contamination issues in the USA, resulting from factors including high rates of atmospheric mercury (Hg) deposition and sulfate inputs from agricultural lands. Sulfate loading stimulates microbial sulfate reduction and production of toxic and bioaccumulative MeHg. Controls on re...
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The Hells Canyon Complex (HCC) along the Snake River (Idaho–Oregon border, U.S.A.) encompasses three successive reservoirs that seasonally stratify, creating anoxic conditions in the hypolimnion that promote methylmercury (MeHg) production. This study quantified seasonal dynamics and interannual variability in mercury concentrations (inorganic diva...
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We conducted a national-scale assessment of mercury (Hg) bioaccumulation in aquatic ecosystems, using dragonfly larvae as biosentinels, by developing a citizen-science network to facilitate biological sampling. Implementing a carefully designed sampling methodology for citizen scientists, we developed an effective framework for a landscape-level in...
Article
Mercury (Hg) contamination in river systems due to historic and current Hg releases is a persistent concern for both wildlife and human health. In larger rivers, like the Ohio River, it is difficult to directly link Hg discharges to bioaccumulation due to the existence of multiple industrial Hg sources as well as the varied dietary and migratory ha...
Article
The strongest evidence for anthropogenic alterations to the global mercury (Hg) cycle comes from historical records of mercury deposition preserved in lake sediments. Hg isotopes have added a new dimension to these sedimentary archives, promising additional insights into Hg source apportionment and biogeochemical processing. Presently, most interpr...
Article
Little is currently known about biogeochemical mercury cycling in geothermal systems. The manuscript presents a new conceptual model, supported by genome-resolved metagenomic analysis and detailed geochemical measurements. The model illustrates environmental factors that influence mercury cycling in acidic springs, including transitions between sol...
Preprint
Full-text available
Mercury (Hg) methylation is a microbially mediated process that converts inorganic Hg into the bioaccumulative neurotoxin methylmercury (MeHg). Exploring the diversity and metabolic potential of the dominant Hg-methylating microorganisms can provide insights into how biogeochemical cycles and water quality parameters underlie MeHg production. Howev...
Preprint
Full-text available
Geothermal systems emit substantial amounts of aqueous, gaseous and methylated mercury, but little is known about microbial influences on mercury speciation. Here we report results from genome-resolved metagenomics and mercury speciation analysis of acid warm springs in the Ngawha Geothermal Field (<55 °C, pH < 4.5), Northland Region, Aotearoa (New...
Chapter
This chapter examines crucial processes in the aquatic cycling of mercury (Hg) that may lead to microbial production of neurotoxic and bioaccumulative methylmercury (MeHg), and highlights environmental conditions in the Everglades that make it ideal for MeHg production and bioaccumulation. The role of complexation of Hg²⁺ in surface water, especial...
Chapter
In this chapter sulfur contamination of the Everglades and its role as a major control on methylmercury (MeHg) production is examined. Sulfate concentrations over large portions of the Everglades (60% of the ecosystem) are elevated or greatly elevated compared to background conditions of <1 mg/L. Land and water management practices in south Florida...
Article
The development of mercury (Hg) stable isotope measurements has enhanced the study of Hg sources and transformations in the environment. As a result of the mixing of inorganic Hg (iHg) and methylmercury (MeHg) species within organisms of the aquatic food web, understanding species-specific Hg stable isotopic compositions is of significant importanc...
Article
High exposures of mammalian species to inorganic mercury (HgII) and methylmercury (MeHg) have been associated with adverse effects on behavior and reproduction. Different mammalian species exhibit varying responses to similar external exposure levels, reflecting potential differences in Hg toxicokinetics. Here, we use Hg stable isotopes, total Hg,...
Article
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To understand the impact reduced mercury (Hg) loading and invasive species have had on methylmercury bioaccumulation in predator fish of Lake Michigan, we reconstructed bioaccumulation trends from a fish archive (1978 to 2012). By measuring fish Hg stable isotope ratios, we related temporal changes in Hg concentrations to varying Hg sources. Additi...
Article
Increasing global reliance on stormwater control measures to reduce discharge to surface water, increase groundwater recharge, and minimize contaminant delivery to receiving waterbodies necessitates improved understanding of stormwater-contaminant profiles. A multi-agency study of organic and inorganic chemicals in urban stormwater from 50 runoff e...
Article
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Streams in the northeastern U.S. receive mercury (Hg) in varying proportions from atmospheric deposition and legacy point sources, making it difficult to attribute shifts in fish concentrations directly back to changes in Hg source management. Mercury stable isotope tracers were utilized to relate sources of Hg to co-located fish and bed sediments...
Article
Timber harvest has many effects on aquatic ecosystems, including changes in hydrological, biogeochemical, and ecological processes that can influence mercury (Hg) cycling. Although timber harvest's influence on aqueous Hg transformation and transport are well studied, the effects on Hg bioaccumulation are not. We evaluated Hg bioaccumulation, bioma...
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The transformations of aqueous inorganic divalent mercury (Hg(II)i) to volatile dissolved gaseous mercury (Hg(0)(aq)) and toxic methylmercury (MeHg) govern mercury bioavailability and fate in northern ecosystems. This study quantified concentrations of aqueous mercury species (Hg(II)i, Hg(0)(aq), MeHg) and relevant geochemical constituents in pore...
Article
In general, fish residing in rivers differ from fish residing in lakes in their mercury (Hg) isotope ratios. Specifically, fish residing in lakes typically show enriched values for the isotope ratios of δ²⁰²Hg (mass-dependent fractionation of isotope ²⁰²Hg) and Δ¹⁹⁹Hg (mass-independent fractionation of isotope ¹⁹⁹Hg) compared with fish residing in...
Article
The precise quantification of mercury (Hg) stable isotope compositions in low concentration or dilute samples poses analytical challenges due to Hg mass limitations. Common Hg pre-concentration procedures require extended processing times, making rapid Hg stable isotope measurements challenging. Here we present a modified pre-concentration method t...
Article
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The whole-fish total mercury (Hg) concentrations were determined in 25 mature female and 26 mature male white suckers (Catostomus commersonii) caught during their spawning run in the Kewaunee River, a tributary to Lake Michigan. The age of each fish was estimated using thin-sectioned otoliths, and total length (TL) and weight were determined for ea...
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Pelagic ecosystems are changing due to environmental and anthropogenic forces, with uncertain consequences for the ocean’s top predators. Epipelagic and mesopelagic prey resources differ in quality and quantity, but their relative contribution to predator diets has been difficult to track. We measured mercury (Hg) stable isotopes in young (<2 years...
Article
Identifying the sources of methylmercury (MeHg) and tracing the transformations of mercury (Hg) in the aquatic food web is an important component of effective strategies for managing fish Hg concentrations. In our previous work we measured stable isotopes of Hg (δ202Hg, Δ199Hg, and Δ200Hg) in the Laurentian Great Lakes and estimated source contribu...
Article
Changing climate in northern regions is causing permafrost to thaw with major implications for the global mercury (Hg) cycle. We estimated Hg in permafrost regions based on in situ measurements of sediment total mercury (STHg), soil organic carbon (SOC), and the Hg to carbon ratio (RHgC) combined with maps of soil carbon. We measured a median STHg...
Article
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Land-use activities can alter hydrological and biogeochemical processes that can affect the fate, transformation, and transport of mercury (Hg). Previous studies in boreal forests have shown that forestry operations can have profound, but variable effects on Hg export and methylmercury (MeHg) formation. The Pacific Northwest is an important timber...
Article
Atmospheric mercury (Hg) deposition to forests is important because half of the land cover in the eastern USA is forest. Mercury was measured in autumn litterfall and weekly precipitation samples at a total of 27 National Atmospheric Deposition Program (NADP) monitoring sites in deciduous and mixed deciduous-coniferous forests in 16 states in the e...
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Mercury (Hg) isotopic signatures were characterized in polished rice samples from China, USA, and Indonesia (n=45). Hg isotopes were also analyzed in paired hair samples for participants from China (n=21). For the latter, we also quantified the proportion of methylmercury intake through rice (range: 31-100%), and the weekly servings of fish meals (...
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The Cinnabar and Fern mine sites in central Idaho are primary source areas for elevated mercury and arsenic entering the South Fork of the Salmon River, which provides critical spawning habitat for bull trout and Chinook salmon. Mercury mineralization is hosted by carbonate rocks, which generate waters dominated by Ca2+ and HCO3 - at pH 7 to 9. A s...
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A comparison of whole-fish polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) and total mercury (Hg) concentrations in mature males with those in mature females may provide insights into sex differences in behavior, metabolism, and other physiological processes. In eight species of fish, we observed that males exceeded females in whole-fish PCB concentration by 17 to...
Article
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Methylmercury (MeHg) exposure can cause adverse reproductive and neurodevelopmental health effects. Estuarine fish may be exposed to MeHg produced in the terrestrial environment, benthic sediment and the marine water column but the relative importance of each source is poorly understood. We measured stable isotopes of mercury (δ²⁰²Hg, Δ¹⁹⁹Hg, and Δ...
Article
Thallium (Tl) has been widely used as an internal standard for mass bias correction during high precision mercury (Hg) isotope ratio measurements using multi-collector inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (MC-ICP-MS). However, a recent study by Georg and Newman indicated the potential for Hg hydride formation (HgHx, x = 1, 2) during Hg isot...
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Atmospheric deposition of mercury onto sea ice and circumpolar sea water provides mercury for microbial methylation, and contributes to the bioaccumulation of the potent neurotoxin methylmercury in the marine food web. Little is known about the abiotic and biotic controls on microbial mercury methylation in polar marine systems. However, mercury me...
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Abstract Methylmercury (MeHg) exposure can cause adverse health effects in children and adults and is predominantly from seafood consumption in the United States (U.S.). Here we examine evidence for differences in MeHg uptake and metabolism in U.S. individuals who consume three or more fish meals per week. We hypothesized based on prior research th...
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The Tibetan Plateau (TP), known as the "Third Pole", is a critical zone for atmospheric mercury (Hg) deposition. Increasing anthropogenic activities in the globe leads to environmental changes, which may affect the loading, transport and deposition of Hg in the environment. However, the deposition history and geochemical cycling of Hg in the TP is...
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Elevated biological concentrations of methylmercury (MeHg), a bioaccumulative neurotoxin, are observed throughout the Arctic Ocean but major sources and degradation pathways in seawater are not well understood. We develop a mass budget for mercury species in the Arctic Ocean based on available data since 2004 and discuss implications and uncertaint...