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Environmental fate & pathways

Bioaccumulation: terrestrial

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Description of key information

Bioaccumulation/bioconcentration factors in soil: 0.39 kg/kg (dry weight)

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Additional information

Bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) for Pb from to soil to earthworms are summarised in the voluntary risk assessment of lead, VRAL(LDAI, 2008). A median BAF for earthworms on a dry weight basis is 0.39 kgdw/kgdw (median of 101 values) and 10-90thpercentiles are 0.13-1.17. On a fresh tissue weight basis, BAF values are 0.10 kgdw/kgww(median) and 0.03-0.27 (10-90thpercentiles). The influence of soil properties on the BAF of earthworms (A. caliginosa) was studied in different soils and the equation describing the BAF as a function of pH reads, with BAF on a wet weight basis (kgdw/kgww)

BAF=13.9*exp(-0.76*pH)

(Ma, 1982). This equation predicts that the median BAF of the 101 data points above (BAF= 0.10 kgdw/kgww) is found at pH=6.5. At pH 4.5, this BAF is 4-fold larger. There is no significant effect of total soil Pb on the BAFs (LDAI, 2008).

A few literature data are available for bioaccumulation of Pb in isopods from soil or litter, 14 BAFs were collected and listed in the table below. Values range from 0.001-0.65 kgdw/kgdw. A median BAF for isopods on a dry weight basis is 0.04 (median of 14 values).

Table: Bioaccumulation factors between soil or decomposed leaf litter and isopods. The Pb concentrations in the biota are the product of BAF and soil Pb concentration.

Test substance

Organism

Test conditions

Medium

Duration

Soil/litter (mg Pb/kgdw)

BAF (kgdw/kgdw)

Reference

Pb-soil

Porcellio scaber

15 adult specimen were exposed for 14 days to approximately 600 mL of air-dried experimental soil (polluted and remediated with 2.5, 10, 40 and 4 x 40 EDTA, respectively) in plastic vessels with plastic covers.

polluted soil

14 days

4603

0.04

Udovic et al. 2009

polluted soil leached with 2.5 mmol kg-1EDTA

4323

0.04

polluted soil leached with 10 mmol kg-1EDTA

2712

0.035

polluted soil leached with 40 mmol kg-1EDTA

2112

0.035

polluted soil leached with 4 x 40 mmol kg-1EDTA

1239

0.025

PbCl2

Porcellio scaber

Isopods were kept in plastic boxes on a moist gypsum base covered by decomposed leaf litter material, i.e. partly decomposed leaf litter material soaked in an aqueous solution of 100, 500 or 1000 mg l–1 Pb2+(as PbCl2).

Control

21 days

 

7.1

0.41

Gräff et al. 1997

100 mg Pb/l

517

0.14

500 mg Pb/l

2777

0.08

1000 mg Pb/l

7676

0.03

Pb-soil

Trachelipus rathkei

Near a smelting complex a transect of 5 soil sampling sites was taken

0.3 km from the smelting complex

whole life

61946

0.006

Rabitsch 1995

Porcellio scaber

0.3 km from the smelting complex

61946

0.002

Trachelipus ratzeburgi

0.5 km from the smelting complex on the other side of the low hill

1190

0.649

1 km from the smelting complex

4618

0.248

2.5 km from the smelting complex

516

0.322