Spatial and temporal heavy metal concentration (Cu, Pb, Zn, Hg, Fe, Mn, Hg) in sediments of the Mar Piccolo in Taranto (Ionian Sea, Italy)

Bianca Maria Petronio, Nicola Cardellicchio, Nicoletta Calace, Marco Pietroletti, Massimiliana Pietrantonio, Lucia Caliandro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Citations (Scopus)


The Mar Piccolo (surface area of 20.72 km2) is located in the Northern area of the Taranto town (Ionian Sea, Italy). It is an inner, semi-enclosed basin with lagoon features connected with the Mar Grande through two channels which are very important for water exchange. Mar Piccolo basin is subjected to urbanization, industry, agriculture, aquaculture and commercial fishing. Hence, it is important to have a temporal picture both of heavy metal content and of organic carbon and their distribution (hydrophobic fraction, hydrophilic fraction, humic compounds) to check the progress of pollution in time. Three sediment cores collected on the basis of the pollution sources have been analyzed. Both heavy metal and organic carbon concentrations underline the fact that the anthropogenic input is different in the three sites, and that in time the amount of pollutants coming into the Mar Piccolo have changed in different ways. The high amount of organic hydrophilic compounds present in sediments, both due to the small water depth and to the high accumulation rate, make the sediment site high in oxygen consumption due to a considerable chemical and biochemical transformations of organic matter. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)863 - 875
Number of pages13
JournalWater, Air, and Soil Pollution
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2012
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pollution
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Ecological Modelling
  • Water Science and Technology

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