Science

Dragonfly larvae collected by citizen-scientists as sentinels for mercury bioaccumulation

Dragonfly larvae collected by citizen-scientists as sentinels for mercury bioaccumulation

Various forms of mercury are released naturally by volcanoes and weathering of rocks and soil. Human activities, such as mining or burning fossil fuels, can also release the element into the environment, where aquatic microbes can convert it into the toxic form, methylmercury. Now, researchers reporting in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology have shown that dragonfly larvae, collected from national parks as part of a citizen-scientist engagement program, can serve as sentinels for mercury bioaccumulation.

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