Measuring Mercury Transport Between Layers of Great Salt Lake, Utah
A student measures brine shrimp distribution in a tube containing mixed layer water (mixolimnion), and deep brine layer water (monimolimnion; bottom)from the Great Salt Lake. The objectives of the microcosm experiment were to: (1) determine if brine shrimp utilize the high organic matter content available at the interface between the two layers, and; (2)determine whether the extremely high methyl mercury levels in the deep brine layer are transferred to to shrimp that live primarily in the mixed layer, but may feed at the interface.
In the 14-day experiment, two tubes were filled with only mixed layer water, and two received both mixed layer and deep brine layer water. Brine shrimp nauplii were added and allowed to grow into adults.