Assessment of sediment toxicity in Galveston Bay, Texas
Harmon, Michelle R., and M. Jawed Hameedi
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NOAA's National Status and Trends Program estimates the spatial extent of coastal environmental degradation due to contamination by toxic chemicals using a series of regional studies as a basis for integration on a national scale. As part of the program, sediment toxicity in Galveston Bay, Texas was studied in August 1996. Preliminary data show that, among the toxicity tests used, the Microtox response was the most pervasive, notably in the upper reaches of the bay and in West Bay. Much of the macrofauna consisted of polychaetes, gastropods, bivalves, and amphipods, with highest faunal densities occurring in Trinity and West bays. Further analyses of data continue, including distribution patterns among sediment toxicity, benthic fauna, and levels of contaminants in sediment.