, Volume 122, Issue 2, pp 121-128

First online:

Effect of an aquatic herbicide on sediment nutrient flux in a freshwater marsh

  • L. G. GoldsboroughAffiliated withDepartment of Botany, University of Manitoba
  • , G. G. C. RobinsonAffiliated withDepartment of Botany, University of Manitoba

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Three concentrations of the herbicide simazine were added to in situ macrophyte-free enclosures with and without sediment contact. Changes in the concentrations of total ammonia, total reactive phosphorus, and silicon were monitored, and net sediment flux was calculated from the difference in nutrient concentration between bottomed and unbottomed enclosures. Rates of sediment release for all three nutrients were unaltered by 0.1 mg · l−1 simazine in relation to a control, whereas rates were increased proportionally at 1.0 and 5.0 mg · l−1. These results suggest that increases in dissolved nutrients commonly observed following herbicide treatment of shallow waters may not be attributable solely to macrophyte decay, byt may also involve a complex interaction of biotic and abiotic sediment nutrient exchange processes.


herbicides nutrients sediment flux epipelon simazine