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Scientific Investigations Report 2011-5225

Prepared in cooperation with the Nickel Producers Environmental Research Association

Toxicity of Nickel-Spiked Freshwater Sediments to Benthic Invertebrates—Spiking Methodology, Species Sensitivity, and Nickel Bioavailability

By John M. Besser, William G. Brumbaugh, Nile E. Kemble, Chris D. Ivey, James L. Kunz, Christopher G. Ingersoll, and David Rudel

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (3.3 MB)Abstract

This report summarizes data from studies of the toxicity and bioavailability of nickel in nickel-spiked freshwater sediments. The goal of these studies was to generate toxicity and chemistry data to support development of broadly applicable sediment quality guidelines for nickel. The studies were conducted as three tasks, which are presented here as three chapters: Task 1, Development of methods for preparation and toxicity testing of nickel-spiked freshwater sediments; Task 2, Sensitivity of benthic invertebrates to toxicity of nickel-spiked freshwater sediments; and Task 3, Effect of sediment characteristics on nickel bioavailability. Appendices with additional methodological details and raw chemistry and toxicity data for the three tasks are available online at

First posted December 21, 2011

For additional information contact:
Director, USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center
4200 New Haven Road
Columbia, MO 65201
(573) 875–5399

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Suggested citation:

Besser, J.M., Brumbaugh, W.G., Kemble, N.E., Ivey, C.D., Kunz, J.L., Ingersoll, C.G., and Rudel, David, 2011, Toxicity of nickel-spiked freshwater sediments to benthic invertebrates—Spiking methodology, species sensitivity, and nickel bioavailability: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2011–5225, 53 p. plus appendixes.




Chapter 1—Development of Methods for Preparation and Toxicity Testing of Nickel-Spiked Freshwater Sediment

1.1 Introduction

1.2 Methods

1.3 Results and Discussion

1.4 Conclusions

Chapter 2—Sensitivity of Benthic Invertebrates to Toxicity of Nickel-Spiked Freshwater Sediments

2.1 Introduction

2.2 Methods

2.3 Results and Discussion

2.4 Conclusions

Chapter 3—Effect of Sediment Characteristics on Nickel Bioavailability

3.1 Introduction

3.2 Methods

3.3 Results and Discussion

3.4 Conclusions

References Cited

Appendixes 1-3

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