Toxicity of environmental acid to the rainbow trout: Interactions of water hardness, acid type, and exercise

M. S. Graham, C. M. Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations

Abstract

Classical 7-day lethality tests were used to establish the influence of water hardness (≃=140 versus ≃14 mg/L CaCO3), acid type (HCl versus H2SO4) and activity level (rest versus exhaustive exercise) on acid toxicity to fingerling rainbow trout (Salmo gairdneri) at 15°C. Seven-day mean lethal concentration (LC50) pH's ranged from 4.1 to 4.5. Hardness reduced H2SO4 toxicity at all pH levels during both rest and exercise, but reduced HCl toxicity only at very low pH levels. Hardness increased HCl toxicity at pH's >3.8. H2SO4 was generally less toxic than HCl, except at pH's >3.8 in soft water. Exhaustive exercise markedly potentiated H2SO4 toxicity in both hard and soft water except at very low pH levels. Below pH = 4.4-4.6, critical swimming speed declined linearly by about 4% per 0.1 pH unit. Possible physiological mechanisms responsible for these modifying influences and their ecological significance are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1518-1526
Number of pages9
JournalCanadian journal of zoology
Volume59
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology

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