Laboratory Evaluation of the Toxicity of Elemental Phosphorus (P4) to Aquatic Organisms.
Final rept. 1 Jun 74-30 Sep 77,
EG AND G BIONOMICS WAREHAM MASS
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The toxicity of elemental phosphorus to a wide variety of aquatic organisms was studied. Results of static acute toxicity tests indicate that the acute LC50 values varied over several orders of magnitude with an observed range of 6 - greater than 560 migrograml of elemental phosphorus. Chronic exposure of fathead minnows for 150 days to concentrations ranging from 1.5 - 3.4 micrograml significantly reduced growth. In addition, survival was affected in concentrations equal to or greater than 1.5 micrograml, while eggs spawned by fish exposed to the low concentrations of 0.71 and 0.40 micrograml failed to hatch when incubated. Although bioaccumulation of elemental phosphorus was low ca 200X, the cumulative mortality pattern observed suggests continuing damage to target organs. Based on the available data and the use of a safety factor of 0.1, an ambient water quality criterion for elemental phosphorus of 0.04 micrograml is recommended. Author
- Biological Oceanography