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Accumulation of phosphorus in coastal marine sediments: relationship to benthic and diffusive fluxes
Rocio Ponce, Teodora Ortega, Jesús M. Forja and Abelardo Gómez-Parra

Sedimentary phosphorus was characterized in sediment cores from 3 coastal ecosystems of the Gulf of Cadiz. High spatial variability was observed in total phosphorus (from 445 to 20291 µg g.sed-1) and in the other phosphorus phases studied. This variability correlates with the proximity of the 10 sampling stations to sources of urban and/or industrial effluent in the zone. The benthic and diffusive fluxes were measured concurrently with sediment collection at these stations. The measured values of benthic fluxes range between –14 and 6 mmol m-2 d-1. Generally, stations that showed increased interstitial phosphate concentrations with increasing depth were characterized by positive values in phosphate benthic fluxes and by high percentages of reactive forms of sedimentary phosphorus. Negative benthic fluxes were associated with stations receiving more anthropogenic matter, which showed progressively decreasing phosphate concentrations in the interstitial water with depth. In these anthropogenic areas, the non-reactive forms of phosphorus (those associated with ferric oxyhydroxide and authigenic carbonate fluorapatite) are abundant, and reach values exceeding 75% of total phosphorus in sediment.

Keywords: benthic fluxes, diffusive fluxes, phosphorus, sediment, Gulf of Cadiz, sequential extraction
Contents of this volume Sci. Mar. 74S1 : 115-124 Back PDF
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