Originally posted by: buyatari2
I picked this chart only because it clearly shows salmon at one end and swordfish at the other. In general these fish which live longer and are further along the food chain will have more mercury. I'm sure as you say there are many other factors but there is a huge disparity between salmon and swordfish.
If you go to the FDA there is a more detailed chart and how the data was determined.
The fact that you chose that specific chart to show what you wanted, shows some of the bias that can occur in these kind of studies. There is truth in the "older the fish, the more the mercury" just because they have had more likelihood of swimming through mercury contaminated waters. Sharks transverse the ocean regularly and approach shores all over the world, so there is a much higher chance of them becoming mercury contaminated.
I have learned over the years while studying science, that research is only as good as the research design. I do not have access to the full journal that is referenced as the source for the studies, so I cannot see if their sampling or data analysis is flawed/allows for bias in any way. I wish I knew if they were pulling the fish from the same area of the ocean/sea. If some of the fish are being pulled close to shorelines, are they figuring in industrial areas around that site or the wateways that dump into that site? This is just an example.
I work with govt regulation and agencies, and their research studies are not always conducted to figure in any or all necessary controls.
I am/was not trying to say you were misinterpreting/misrepresenting the data in any way. Just that data is only as good as the research design.
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