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U.S. Geological Survey
Open-File Report 2006-1147
Version 1.0

Coastal Circulation and Sediment Dynamics in Hanalei Bay, Kaua’i, Hawaii, Part III, Studies of Sediment Toxicity

By Robert S. Carr, Marion Nipper, Michael Field, and James M. Biedenbach


looking down on the bay from a satellite
QuickBird satellite image courtesy of P. Chavez, USGS

Toxicity tests are commonly conducted as a measure of the bioavailability of toxic chemicals to biota in an environment. Chemical analyses alone are insufficient to determine whether contaminants pose a threat to biota. Porewater toxicity tests are extremely sensitive to a broad range of contaminants in marine environments and provide ecologically relevant data on sensitive life stages. The inclusion of porewater toxicity testing as an additional indicator of sediment quality provides a more comprehensive picture of contaminant effects in these sensitive habitats.

In this study purple-spined sea urchin (Arbacia punctulata) fertilization and embryological development porewater toxicity tests were used to evaluate the sediments collected from the coastal environment around Hanalei Bay, Kaua’i, Hawaii. These tests have been used previously to assess the bioavailability of contaminants associated with sediments in the vicinity of coral reefs.

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Also of interest:

Open-File Report 2006-1085, Coastal circulation and sediment dynamics in Hanalei Bay, Kaua’i, part I, measurements of waves, currents, temperature, salinity and turbidity; June - August, 2005, by Curt D. Storlazzi, M. Kathy Presto, Joshua B. Logan, and Michael E. Field

Open-File Report 2006-1125, Coastal circulation and sediment dynamics in Hanalei Bay, Kaua’i, part II, tracking recent fluvial sedimentation; isotope stratigraphy obtained in summer 2005, by Amy E. Draut, Michael E. Field, Michael H. Bothner, Joshua B. Logan, Michael A. Casso, Sandra M. Baldwin, and Curt D. Storlazzi

For questions about the content of this report, contact Scott Carr

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Maintained by: Michael Diggles
Date created: August 4, 2006
Date last modified: August 4, 2006 (mfd)