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This paper presents a large eddy simulation of mass transfer in the flow around a surface-mounted finite-height circular cylinder. The study was carried out for a cylinder with height-to-diameter ratio of 2.5 and a Reynolds number based on the cylinder diameter of 44000. The approach flow boundary layer had a thickness of about 10% of the cylinder height. A tracer was released at various levels upstream of the cylinder. The effect of the release position in the subsequent spreading and dilution of the plumes is analyzed. It is found that a tracer released at the top or at mid-height is entrained into the recirculation zone behind the cylinder, and therefore presents similar plume evolution in the far wake in both cases. If the tracer is released at around three-quarters of the height of the cylinder, it is not significantly entrained by the main recirculation region, leading to smaller rates of spreading of the plume. Finally, if the tracer is released near the floor, the plume is entrained by the horseshoe vortex that wraps around the cylinder, leading to a large lateral spreading of the plume, remaining always near the floor.