Long-term records of trace metal content of western Mediterranean seagrass (Posidonia oceanica) meadows: Natural and anthropogenic contributions

A. Tovar-Sanchez, J. Seron, N. Marba, J.M. Arrieta, Carlos Duarte

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27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We discuss Al, Ag, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb, and Zn contents in seagrass Posidonia oceanica rhizomes from the Balearic Archipelago for the last 3 decades. Time series of metal concentration in P. oceanica were measured by dating rhizomes using retrospective procedures. The highest concentrations of Al (174.73 mu g g(-1)), Cd (3.56 mu g g(-1)), Cr (1.34 mu g g(-1)), Cu (32.15 mu g g(-1)), Pb (8.51 mu g g(-1)), and Zn (107.14 mu g g(-1)) were measured in meadows located around the largest and most densely populated island (Mallorca Island). There was a general tendency for Ag concentration to decrease with time (up to 80% from 1990 to 2005 in sample from Mallorca Island), which could be attributed to a reduction of the anthropogenic sources. Nickel and Zn concentrations were the unique elements that showed a consistent temporal trend in all samples, increasing their concentrations since year 1996 at all studied stations; this trend matched with the time series of UV-absorbing aerosols particles in the air (i.e., aerosols index) over the Mediterranean region (r(2): 0.78, p <0.001 for Cabrera Island), suggesting that P. oceanica could be an efficient recorder of dust events. A comparison of enrichment factors in rhizomes relative to average crustal material indicates that suspended aerosol is also the most likely source for Cr and Fe to P. oceanica.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10pp
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences
Volume115
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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