Dry deposition and foliar leaching of mercury and selected trace elements in deciduous forest throughfall

TitleDry deposition and foliar leaching of mercury and selected trace elements in deciduous forest throughfall
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsRea AWinona, Lindberg SE, Keeler GJ
JournalAtmospheric Environment
Volume35
Pagination3453-3462
KeywordsTRACE ELEMENTS
Abstract

The estimated annual throughfall deposition flux of Hg in a northern mixed-hardwood forest in the Lake Huron Watershed was 10.5 +- 1.0 ug/m2 compared to an annual precipitation Hg flux of 8.7 +- 0.5 ug/m2 (June 1996-June 1997). The source of this additional Hg in throughfall is often attributed to wash-off of dry deposition, but foliar leachingof Hg may also be important. To determine the influence of both dry deposition and foliar leaching of Hg and other elements in throughfall, we measured a suite of trace elements (Hg, Al, Mg, V, Mn, Cu, Zn, As, Rb, Sr, Cd, Ba, La, Ce, and Pb) in throughfall, precipitation and ambient air samples from a northern mixed-hardwood forest. Based on a multiple linear regression model, dry deposition had the most important influence on Hg, Al, La, Ce, V, As, Cu, Zn, Cd, and Pb fluxes while foliar leaching strongly influenced Mg, Mn, Rb, Sr, and Ba fluxes in net throughfall. The Hg dry deposition flux was estimated using gaseous and aerosol Hg measurements and modeled deposition velocities. The calculated dry deposition flux (~12-14 ug/m2) of Hg to the canopy indicated that atmospheric deposition of Hg could easily account for all of the Hg deposited in net throughfall (1.9 +-0.1 ug/m2). Although there is a large uncertainty associated with these techniques, the modeling estimates indicate that atmospheric Hg may account for all of the Hg deposited in litterfall (11.4 +- 2.8 ug/m2).