The influence of airborne road dust on the chemistry of Sphagnum mosses

Mary V. Santelmann, Eville Gorham

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Chemical analysis of Sphagnum moss samples collected from a raised Sphagnum bog along a transect at right angles to and away from a gravel road at pointe Escuminac, New Brunswick, Canada, shows that concentrations of the elements Al, Cr, Fe, La, Ni, Sc, Sm and V are strongly correlated with one another, and their concentrations decrease logarithmically away from the road to a distance of 200 m. These element are deposited primarily in wind borne soil dust. Concentrations of Na and Cl are correlated; their primary source is precipitation enriched by sea spray. Amounts of As, Cd, Pb, and Zn are also intercorrelated and vary independently of other elements; their primary source is air pollution.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)1219-1231
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Ecology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1988


  • Peatland ecology and biogeochemistry
  • Atmospheric chemical inputs, including acid rain, to oligotrophic ecosystems, especially bogs & lakes

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