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Publication Information

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Title: Fallout Radioactivity and Epiphytes.

Author: Odum, H. T.; Briscoe, George Ann; Briscoe, C. B.;

Date: 1970

Source: A Tropical Rainforest. Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico: Division of Technical Information, US Atomic Energy Commission: H167-H176

Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication (MISC)

Description: After relatively high levels of fallout retention were dicovered in the epiphytic mossy forest of the Luquillo Mountains durin 1962, a survey of the distribution of radioactivity in the rain forest system was made with beta counting of 1500 samples supplemented with gamma spectra. High levels, up to 4138 counts per minute per gram, were found mainly in or on green plant tissue and the derived litter, with as much variability among leaves of the same tree as between trees. The degree of uptake was correlated with epiphytic mode of growth, with algae--moss--liverwort encrustatations highest, massive mosses second, bromeliads third, and rooted plants last. The radioactivity in leaves was found to be in proportion to the epiphytic growth on the leaves and thus was related to their age. Gamma spectra were similar in most material including leaves of many tree species, litter, termite nest, and the roof of algae near San Juan.

Keywords: Radioactivity, Epiphytes

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Odum, H. T.; Briscoe, George Ann; Briscoe, C. B. 1970. Fallout Radioactivity and Epiphytes. In: Odum, H. T., ed. A Tropical Rainforest. Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico: Division of Technical Information, US Atomic Energy Commission: H167-H176.


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