Total mercury content was evaluated in water and suspended sediment samples of the Moji-Guaçu river and in water and bottom sediment of its 3 marginal lagoons (Catingueiro, Barrinha, and Rio das Pedras), located down-stream of the sampling point in the main channel. In all situations, low Hg concentrations were found in suspended and bottom sediments. Aluminum was used as a geo-chemical tracer to normalize the Hg concentrations in the sediment cores from the Rio das Pedras lagoon (r = 0.92). It was estimated that the Moji-Guaçu river transports up to 19 kg Hg yr−1, 65% in the dissolved form and 35% adsorbed onto particulate matter. Following an acute toxic stage observed in the years 1970–1980, the basin has been restored to its original conditions mainly by natural recovery and a general reduction in Hg input to the eco-system.
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