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Trace element concentration in snakes of coastal and serrana region of the State of Espírito Santo, Brazil


Chemical elements are mostly involved in biochemical and geochemical cycles in concentrations which are harmless for organisms. However, accelerated human actions promote environmental changes such as the increase in contaminant intake. With this information, this study aimed to characterize the presence of trace elements in two snake species common in Southeastern Brazil, Boa constrictor and Bothrops jararaca. Copies of B. constrictor (n=18) were from pedestrian accidents which occurred on Highway stretch ES-060 from Km 0 to Km 67.5. Copies of B. jararaca (n=18) were captured by farmers in a rural mountainous area of Espíirito Santo State, Brazilo. They were analyzed 1 kidney fragment grass, autopsied specimens. Harvested kidneys were digested with acid mixture (HNO3 e HCl 1:1) at 300°C, 40 min and quantification of microelementos (Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb and Zn) were determined by spectrometric optical emission with inductively coupled plasma (ICP OES). significant differences between males and females were observed, except for Chrome in B. constrictor (p=0.03), with an average of 1.6595 in Cr concentration of females and 0.2896 in males. However, when different species of snakes were compared, different concentrations were found for all elements, especially iron with a concentration of 106.2mg/g in B. constrictor and 120.3mg/g in B. jararaca; probably these animals came from areas near iron ore ports. The concentration of zinc in B. constrictor was 1261.8mg/g and in B. jararaca 28,4mg/g. This study indicates that the analyzed snakes, which inhabit the regions of Greater Victoria and the mountainous region of the State of Espírito Santo have high concentrations of the microelements Zn and Fe.

Bioacumulation; Boa constrictor; Bothrops jararaca; environmental contamination

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