Impact of anthropogenic activities on the concentration of trace elements in toe bones of the common toad (Bufo bufo)

Edina Simon, János Tamás Kundrát, M. Braun, B. Kovács, Dávid Andrási, B. Tóthmérész

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Frogs and toads are frequently used as bioindicators of inorganic pollutants. Anthropogenic stress was assessed in three lakes from Hungary (Naplás, Frog Pond and Lak-völgyi Reservoir), by studying the concentration of trace elements in the toe bones of Bufo bufo. Lake Naplás was the most affected by anthropogenic effects, but Frog Pond was also characterized by higher anthropogenic activities than the Lakvölgyi Reservoir. The following trace elements were analysed in toe bones, water and soil samples: Al, Ba, Ca, Cu, Fe, Mg, Mn, P, Pb, V and Zn. In toe bones no significant differences were found in the Ca, P and Zn concentrations among the studied lakes. On the other hand, the Mg, Al, Fe, Ba, Pb and V concentrations were significantly higher in toe bones at Lake Naplás than at the two other lakes. The use of the bioaccumulation factor (BAF) showed that the potential of bioaccumulation from the soil was low for toads. For water, the BAFs values for Cu, Mn, V and Zn indicated that toads may accumulate these elements from water. Our results demonstrated that the accumulation rate of metals depends on several factors, including dietary and exposure time, stage of development - i.e. tadpole or adult. In summary, the analysis of toe bones demonstrated that toads may be useful indicator organisms; moreover, using modern analytical methods there was no need to kill these animals for bioaccumulation studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-69
Number of pages7
JournalNorth-Western Journal of Zoology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2017


  • Amphibians
  • Bioaccumulation factor
  • Bioindicators
  • Spectrometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

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