A Study of Polonium 210 and Lead 210 in Food Chains, Lichen-Caribou-Man and Lichen-Caribou-Wolf in Northern Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories

Regions: North Slave Region, Kivalliq Region, Nunavut

Tags: contaminants, bioaccumulation, lichen, caribou, wolf, food chain

Principal Investigator: Thomas, Patricia (1)
Licence Number: 11064
Organization: Department of Biology, University of Saskatchewan
Licenced Year(s): 1991
Issued: Jan 01, 1991
Project Team: Dr. S. Swanson; Dr. J. Sheard; D. Richert; Local Co-ordinators, Interpreters, Diet Interviewers, Hunters and Community Women

Objective(s): To determine baseline concentrations of Polonium 210 and Lead 210 in samples of lichens, caribou and wolf tissues and human placentae; to calculate transfer coefficients between trophic levels in the foodchain; to establish dose estimates for caribou, wolf and people; to determine Polonium and Lead ratios for environmental monitoring.

Project Description: The study will compare two arctic food chains, namely, lichen-caribou- wolf and lichen-caribou-human to investigate the accumulation and transfer of Polonium-210 and Lead-210. Background levels of radiation will be measured by collecting samples of lichen, caribou, wolf and human placenta.