Livers of gopher snakes (Pituophis melanoleucus) from Kesterson Reservoir (Merced County, California) contained significantly higher mean selenium concentrations (11.1 .mu.g/g, dry weight) than those from two nearby reference sites (2.05 and 2.14 .mu.g/g). Livers of bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana) collected from the San Luis Drain at Kersterson Reservoir also contained significantly higher mean selenium concentrations (45.0 .mu.g/g) than those from nearby reference sites (6.22 .mu.g/g). The high levels of selenium bioaccumulation in these snakes and frogs at Kersterson Reservoir reflected the elevated levels found in their food organisms. We did not examine that snakes or frogs from Kesterson for signs of ill health, but the concentrations we found were sufficiently high to warrant concern about potential adverse effects in these animals and their predators.
Additional publication details
Bioaccumulation of selenium by snakes and frogs in the San Joaquin Valley, California