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Whole organism concentration ratios of radionuclides and metals in terrestrial vertebrates of an Australian tropical savanna environment

Doering, Che
Journal of environmental radioactivity 2019 v.207 pp. 7-14
Chiroptera, Metatheria, analysis of variance, birds, environmental assessment, mammals, mining, radioactivity, radionuclides, reptiles, savannas, uranium, wildlife
Preliminary values of whole organism concentration ratio (CRwo-soil) were derived for terrestrial vertebrates of an Australian tropical savanna environment. Wildlife groups included bird, bat, ground-dwelling mammal and reptile. Sample data for some of the wildlife groups (bird and bat in particular) were limited. The bird and bat CRwo-soil values were generally lower than the ground-dwelling mammal and reptile CRwo-soil values based on the available data. Arithmetic mean CRwo-soil values for two species of native marsupial and two species of non-native placental were not significantly different (p < 0.05) when tested using a one-way analysis of variance. The results hinted at possible sampling efficiencies for terrestrial vertebrates. However, verification with additional data was recommended. Used cautiously, the CRwo-soil values may assist in environmental assessments of Australian uranium mining sites. They also enhance the available data on radionuclide transfer to wildlife for use internationally.