AuthorHenshel, Judy, 1958-
KeywordsWater quality -- Puerco River (N.M. and Ariz.)
Soils -- Heavy metal content -- Puerco River Watershed (N.M. and Ariz.)
AdvisorKlemmedson, James O.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractA study was conducted to test for the presence of heavy metals (Cu, Mn, and Zn) in surface sediments of the Puerco River channel in the aftermath of a toxic spill in 1979 near Church Rock, New Mexico. Analysis of samples from five sites downstream from the spill showed that these substances were not present in unusually large amounts, though an increasing gradient of metal concentration with distance downstream was revealed. Statistical analysis revealed the Cu, Mn, and Zn were associated with clay and silt, soil organic matter, organic carbon, and carbonates, all of which existed as extraneous, uncontrolled variables. Adjusted metal concentrations, obtained with covariate analyses, confirmed the increasing gradient downstream. Clay and silt also increased downstream. Some toxic substances may have leached into the riverbed; possible mechanisms for this process are also discussed and further study to substantiate or disprove this hypothesis is recommended.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Renewable Natural Resources