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Report No.
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Radioactive cesium contamination of arthropods and earthworms after the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident

Tanaka, Sota; Adachi, Taro*; Takahashi, Tomoyuki*; Takahashi, Sentaro*

To understand the behavior of radiocesium in terrestrial invertebrates, chronological changes in the concentration of radiocesium in arthropods and earthworms from different trophic levels were investigated after the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident. The median radiocesium concentrations in the rice grasshopper, Oxya yezoensis, and the Emma field cricket, Teleogryllus emma, were 0.46 and 0.15 Bq/g fw in 2012, respectively, which dropped continuously to 0.05 and 0.01 Bq/g fw in 2016. In contrast, no significant reduction in radiocesium concentration was observed in the Joro Spider, Nephila clavata, in which the concentration was 0.31 Bq/g fw in 2012 and remained at 0.14 Bq/g fw in 2016. The comparison of radiocesium concentrations at each trophic level showed that the amount in detritivorous earthworms was 85 times higher than in herbivorous grasshoppers. This suggests that detritus food web could be a primary pathway of radiocesium through food webs.

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