Morphometric and Heavy Metals Accumulation in the Muscles of Five Demersal Seafoods Sampled in Nigerian Coastal Waters




This study examined the morphometric and heavy metals accumulated in the muscles of five demersal sea-foods: Parapenaeopsis atlantica, Penaeus monodon, Penaeus notialis, Portunus validus and Cynoglossus browni from Nigerian coastal waters. 506 deep frozen samples (at -200C) each of the five demersal species were taken upon arrival from thirty-one (31) industrial fishing trawler vessels owned by a private fishing company in Lagos, Nigeria. Samples were thawed and morphometric characteristics such as weight, total length, standard length, body depth and carapace length/head length were measured. The heavy metals [Lead (Pb), Iron (Fe), Zinc (Zn), Arsenic (As), Mercury (Hg) and Cadmium (Cd)] were analyzed using 210 Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS). The morphometric characteristics revealed that P. atlantica and P. notialis showed no significant difference in mean values only for their carapace lengths while both species showed statistically different observations for other variables. The order of the heavy metals mean concentration was Zn>Fe>Pb. As and Cd had relatively very low values of <0.01mg/kg while Hg was not detected in all samples. The findings of this study revealed high and increasing values of Zinc in all five demersal species under consideration exceeding maximum limits for FAO/WHO and NIS (Nigerian Industrial Standard). The zinc value of the species appears to be contained in this order; P. notialis > C. browni > P. monodon > P. validus >P. atlantica. However, Iron value for P. atlantica is above the limit of FAO/WHO.  Consumption of the species invariably leads to a rise in the Zinc contents in diets and in humans which may cause gastrointestinal disorders, kidney and liver abnormal functioning especially in infants and children while other heavy metals contained in the species do not pose a threat to human health.


Heavy metals, Morphometrics, Demersal, Seafoods


Download data is not yet available.


Abimbola Uzomah, Anne-Katrine Lundebye, Mariam Kjellevoid, Fubara A., Chuku and Oluwafemi A. Stephen. “A review of chemical contaminants in Marine and Fresh water fish in Nigeria”. MDPI Journals, Foods Volume 10 Issue 9. 2021.

Ajani Ekaete Gloria, Popoola Oladunle Samuel and Oyatola Opeyemi Otolorin. “Evaluation of the pollution status of Lagos Coastal waters and Sediments, using physicochemical characteristics, contamination factor, Nemerow Pollution index, Ecological Risk and Potential Ecological Risk Index”. International Journal of Environment and Climate change. 11(3):1-16, 2021. Article no. IJECC.61740 ISSN: 2581-8627. DOI:10.97341/IJECC/2021/v11i330371.

Akan, Joseph Clement, Mohmoud Salwa, Yikala Bashir Shettima and Ogugbuaja Victor Obioma. “Bioaccumulation of Some Heavy Metals in Fish Samples from River Benue in Vinikilang, Adamawa State, Nigeria”. American Journal of Analytical Chemistry. 3, 727-736. 2012.

Anyanwu, P.E, Ayinla, O.A, Ebonwu, B.I, Ayaobu-Cookey, I.K, Hamzat, M.B, Ihimekpen, A.F, Matanmi, M.A, Afolabi, E.S, Ajijo, M.R and Olaluwoye, B.L. “Culture possibilities of Penaeus monodon in Nigeria”. Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Science, 6: 499-505. 2011

Ashraf Waqar and Mian Atiq . “Levels of Mercury and Arsenic contamination in popular fish and shrimp brands consumed in Saudi Arabia.” Bull. Chem. Soc. Ethiop. 33(3), 573-578. 2019. ISSN 1011-3924.

Badejo, O.T Badejo, and Nwilo C, Peter . “Impacts and Management of Oil Spill pollution along the Nigerian Coastal Areas”. 2015.

Djedjibegovic Jasmina, Marjanovic. A, Tahirovic. D, Caklovica. K, Turalic. A, Lugusic. Omeragic. E, Sober. M & Caklovica. F. “Heavy metals in commercial fish and seafood products and risk assessment in adult population in Bosnia and Herzegonia”. Scientific Reports 10:1323. Jul. 2020.

Elekima Ibioku, Edookue B. Raphael, Peppie F. Nengi, Aworu M. Aminayanate and Ben-Chioma E Adline. “Evaluation of Some Heavy metals in Selected Seafoods directly from the Creeks in Rivers State, Nigeria”. Journal of Advances in Medical and Pharmaceutical Sciences. 22 (10): 29-39, Dec 2020. Article no JAMPS 63492 ISSN:b2394-1111.

El-Moselhy. M. Kh, Othman .A.I, Abd El-Azem .H and El-Metwally M.E.A . “Bioaccumulation of heavy metals in some tissues of fish in the Red Sea, Egypt”. Egyptian Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences 97-105. 2014.

Emmanuel, B.E and Adedigba, O.F . “Proximate composition and heavy metals content of Callinectes amnicola (De Rochebrne, 1883) and Portunus validus (Herklots, 1851) in Makoko Market, Lagos, Nigeria”. Nigerian Journal of Fisheries and Aquaculture 6(1) 88-95 ISSN-2350-153. 2018.

Emmanuel Charles Partheeban, Vinothkannan Anbazhagan, Ganeshkumar Arumugam, Bathirinath Seshasayanan, Rajaram Rajendran, Bilal Ahmad Paray, Mohammed Khalid Al-sadoon and Abdul Rahman Al-Mfarij. “Evaluation of toxic metal contaminants in the demersal flatfishes (Order: Pleuronectiformes) collected from a marine biosphere reserve”. Regional Studies in Marine Science, Volume 42, 2021. 101649. ISSN 2352-4855.

FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization). “Species Identification Guide for Fishery purposes. The living Marine resources of the sea”. FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Technical Paper 569. 2014. ISSN 2070-7010.

FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization). “Fisheries and Aquaculture Department. Species fact sheets. Penaeus notialis (Perez-Farfarte, 1967)” 54. 2018

[14] FAO/WHO (Food and Agricultural Organization/World Health Organization).“Joint FAO/WHO food standards programme CODEX committee on contaminants in foods”.CODEX STAN 193-1995. 90Pp. 2015

FCWC (Fisheries Committee for the West Central Gulf of Guinea). “Nigeria: Fisheries department licences 143 vessels for 2019”. Mar 2019. Source:

Kazim Uysal . “Heavy metal in edible portions (Muscle and Skin) and other organs (Gill, Liver and Intestine) of selected Freshwater Fish Species”. International Journal of Food Properties, 14:2, 280-286. 2011. DOI: 10. 1080/10942910903176378.

Kiel, J. “Penaeus monodon” (airline). Animal Diversity web. 2013 http://animal monodon/.

Kushoro, Yetunde Hijrah and Ndimele, Prince Emeka. “Heavy metal content of water, sediment and fish (Orechromis niloticus, Linnaeus, 1758) from industrial effluent-polluted aquatic ecosystem in Lagos, Nigeria”. Ocean Sciences meeting 16-21 Feb 2020. San Diego, CA USA. Advancing Earth and Space Science.

Lawal- Are Aderonke Omolara and Bilewu Barakat. “The Biology of the Smooth Swim Crab Portunus validus (Herklots) off Lagos Coast, Nigeria”. European Journal of Scientific Research Vol.30 No.3 pp 402 - 408. 2009. ISSN 1450-216

Marine Species Identification portal. “Fishes of the NE Atlantic and the Mediterranean”. Nigerian tongue sole (Cynoglossus browni). 2018

Mohammed Mahjoub, Soufiane Fadlaoui, Mohammed El Maadoudi, Youssef Smiri. “Mercury, Lead and Cadmium in the muscles of Five Fish Species from the Mechraa Hammadi Dam in Morocco and Health Risks for their consumers”. Journal of Toxicology. Vol 2021. Article ID 8865869, 10 pages. Jan 2021.

Narjala Rama Jyothi. “Heavy Metal Sources and Their Effects on Human Health”. Open access peer-reviewed chapter. Dec. 2020. DOI: 10.5772/intechopen.95370

Ndimele, P.E; Owodeinde, F.G; Giwa-Ajeniya, A.O.; Moronkola, B.A; Adaramoye, O.R; Ewenla, L.O and Kushoro, H.Y. “Ecosystem health assessment of three inland water bodies in South-West, Nigeria based on fish diversity, pollution status, ecological and health risk indices”. Research Square. 2021. DOI: https//

NIS (Nigerian Industrial Standard). “Standard for Quick Frozen Whole Fish”. ICS 67.120.30. NIS 596. Page 8. 2008.Price Group B SON 2008. Approved by the Standards Organisation of Nigeria Governing Council.

Olaoye Jacob Olalekan and Ojebiyi Gbenga Wahab. “Marine Fisheries in Nigeria: A review”. 2018.

Oladunjoye R.Y., Fafioye O.O., Bankole S.T., Adedeji A.H. and Edoh A.S. “Heavy Metals in Shell Fishes of Ojo River, Lagos State, Nigeria. Agro-Science Journal of Tropical Agriculture, Food, Environment and Extension. Volume 20 Number 3 Pp 99-105 Jul. 2021. DOI:

Olaniyi Rafiu Shelle and Popoola Olatunde Samuel. “Trace Metal Concentrations of Surface Sediments and Total Organic Carbon of Sediment Core Recovered From Lagos Coastal Waters, Southwestern Nigeria”. Scholars International Journal of Chemistry and Material Sciences. Jun 2021. ISSN 2616-8669 (Print) ISSN 2617-6556 (Online). Scholars Middle East Publishers, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Olusola JO and Festus AA. “Levels of Heavy Metal in Some Selected Fish Species inhabiting Ondo Coastal Waters, Nigeria”. J Environ Anal Toxicol. 5: 303. 2015 doi:10.4172/2161-0525.1000303. ISSN: 2161-0525.

Prabhu Dass Batvari, S Sivakumar, K Shanthi, Kui-Jae Lee, Byung-Taek Oh, RR Krishnamurthy and Seralathan Kamala-Kannan. “Heavy metals accumulation in Crab and Shrimps from Pulicat lake, north, north Chennai coastal southeast coast of India”. Toxicol Ind Health. 2013

Rajagopal Santhanam, Santhi Natarajan, Sambasivam Subrahmanyan,and Balasubramanian Thangavel. “Morphometric studies on wild caught and cultured shrimp Penaeus monodon (Fabricius, 1798) from Parangipettai, India”. Advances in Applied Science Research. 2 (5):490-507. 2011.

Sakib Nazmuz S.M. “The impact of Oil and Gas Development on the landscape and surface in Nigeria”. Asian Pacific Journal of Environment and Cancer. Vol 4 No 1. 2021. DOI 10.31557/APJEC.2021.4.9-17.

UN World Urbanisation Prospects. “World Population Review. Lagos Population 2021”. 2021

Wu B, Song J, Li X . “Evaluation of potential relationships between benthic community structure and toxic metals in Laizhou Bay”. Marine Pollut. Bull. 87, 247 -256. 2014

Parapenaeopsis atlantica Balss 1914 Guinea shrimp: 2018 fisheries search.

Zhao S, Feng C, Quan W, Chen X, Niu J, Shen Z. “Role of living environments in the accumulation characteristics of heavy metals in fishes and crabs in the Yangtze River Estuary, China”. Mar Pollut Bull; 64;1163-7. 2012






Graduate Research Articles

How to Cite

O. P. Fajana and A. Adeboyejo, “Morphometric and Heavy Metals Accumulation in the Muscles of Five Demersal Seafoods Sampled in Nigerian Coastal Waters”, Adv. J. Grad. Res., vol. 12, no. 1, pp. 20–35, Mar. 2022.