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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 7 No. 3, p. 301-305
    Received: Sept 2, 1977

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Some Aspects of Sediment Distribution and Macrophyte Cycling of Heavy Metals in a Contaminated Lake1

  1. A. W. McIntosh,
  2. B. K. Shephard,
  3. R. A. Mayes,
  4. G. J. Atchison and
  5. D. W. Nelson2



Distribution and forms of the metals cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) in sediment and the possible significance of a die-off of the aquatic macrophyte Potamogeton crispus in Cd cycling in a metal-contaminated lake were studied. Metal levels in the upper 5 cm of lake sediment ranged from 2.54 ppm Cd and 115 ppm Zn in an uncontaminated area of the lake to 805 ppm Cd and 6,120 ppm Zn near the entrance of a metal-bearing ditch to the lake. Evidence of metal contamination existed at a depth of 30 cm in sediments in contaminated areas of the system. Dominant forms present in the sediment were the carbonate for Cd and carbonate and organic for Zn. Analysis indicated Cd levels as high as 89.6 ppm in P. crispus in the lake with a maximum burden of 1.5 kg Cd held by the lake's P. crispus population. Release of the total amount could raise water concentrations by a maximum of 1 µg/liter.

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