Water, Air, and Soil Pollution

, Volume 98, Issue 3–4, pp 381–387 | Cite as

Tree bark as a bioindicator of air pollution in Navarra, spain

  • J. M. Santamaría
  • A. Martín


During a two year research period from 1992 to 1993, samples of different species of trees were taken in 17 forest stands located in Navarra, Spain. From these samples, bark extracts were prepared in which the pH and the conductivity were measured. The health of the sampling trees was also evaluated by determining the degree of defoliation and decoloration of the canopies. The bark tissue analysis revealed the presence of an environmental acidity gradient that decreased from NW to SE. This coincides with the location of important sources of pollution and their course of transport and dispersion. On the other hand, in the samples ofQuercus ilex a significant correlation between the pH and the defoliation levels (P≤0.01, r=0.62) was found. This fact reveals the potential usefulness of tree bark as a health bioindicator of trees.

Key words

air pollution bioindicator biomonitoring tree bark 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Grether, D.F.: 1977,Water, Air, and Soil Pollut. 7, 10.Google Scholar
  2. Grodzinska, K.: 1978,Water, Air, and Soil Pollut. 7, 3.Google Scholar
  3. Grodzinska, K.: 1979,Environ. Intern. 2, 173.Google Scholar
  4. Grodzinska, K.: 1982,Monitoring of Air Pollution by Plants, Steubing, L. and Jäger, H.J. (eds.), W. Junk Publishers, The Hague.Google Scholar
  5. Härtel, O. and Grill, D.: 1972,Eur. J. Forest Path. 2, 205.Google Scholar
  6. Johnsen, I. and Søchting, U.: 1973,Oikos 24, 344.Google Scholar
  7. Kuik, P. and Wolterbeek, H. Th.: 1994,Environ. Monit. Assess. 32, 207.Google Scholar
  8. Liu, R., Jiang, K. and Tian, D.: 1992,Zhiwn Xuebao 34, 622.Google Scholar
  9. Lötschert, W. and Köhm, H. J.: 1978,Oecologia 37, 121.Google Scholar
  10. NCC: 1993,Field Working Manual of Level 1. Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Spain.Google Scholar
  11. Santamaria, J. M.: 1995,The use of bioindicators to monitor air pollution effects on the phytosanitary state of Navarra forests, Doctoral Thesis. Faculty of Sciences. Dept. of Chemistry and Soil Science. University of Navarra, Spain.Google Scholar
  12. Swieboda, M. and Kalemba, A.: 1979,Acta Soc. Bot. Po. 48.Google Scholar
  13. Tuerkan, I., Henden, E., Celik, V. and Kivilcim, S.: 1995,Sci. Total. Environ. 166, 61.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. M. Santamaría
    • 1
  • A. Martín
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Chemistry and Soil ScienceUniversity of Navarra, Irunlarrea s/nPamplonaSpain

Personalised recommendations