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Toxicity of the herbicides bromacil and simazine to the aquatic macrophyte, Vallisneria americana Michx

Authors

  • P. Chris Wilson,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Soil and Water Science, University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences/Indian River Research and Education Center, 2199 South Rock Road, Fort Pierce, Florida 34945, USA
    • Department of Soil and Water Science, University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences/Indian River Research and Education Center, 2199 South Rock Road, Fort Pierce, Florida 34945, USA.
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  • Sandra B. Wilson

    1. Department of Environmental Horticulture, University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences/Indian River Research and Education Center, 2199 South Rock Road, Fort Pierce, Florida 34945, USA
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Abstract

Vallisneria americana Michx. (tapegrass) is an ecologically important submersed, vascular aquatic plant that provides food and shelter for many aquatic and waterfowl species. This plant often occurs close to land areas where herbicides are used. Nontarget exposure of these plants to herbicides may compromise ecological structure and function. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the suitability of several endpoint measurements for determining no-observable-adverse effect concentrations (NOAECs), lowest-observable-adverse effect concentrations (LOAECs), and median effective concentration values (EC50s) for tapegrass exposed to the herbicides bromacil (0–0.092 mg/L) and simazine (0–0.592 mg/L) following a 13-d single-pulse exposure and 15-d (bromacil) or 14-d (simazine) postexposure periods. The NOAEC/LOAEC/EC50 for fresh weight gains, new leaf production, and total leaf growth after 13-d exposure to bromacil were 0.020/0.036/0.032, 0.036/0.054/0.036, and 0.036/0.054/0.043 mg/L, respectively. The same respective NOAEC/LOAEC/EC50s for simazine were <0.058/0.058/0.067, 0.229/0.344/0.154, and 0.058/0.116/0.081 mg/L. Reductions in quantity and fresh weight of daughter plants produced and stolon fresh weights occurred at bromacil concentrations ≥0.077, 0.020, and 0.036 mg/L, respectively; and simazine concentrations ≥0.344, >0.592, and ≥0.116 mg/L, respectively. Neither herbicide affected leaf greenness, total chlorophyll concentrations, or carbohydrate allocation. Although toxicity was shown for many endpoints, most EC50 values were greater than aquatic life benchmark values for algae used by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA), but less than for aquatic plants, indicating that V. americana would likely be protected by use of the algal benchmark criteria. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 2010;29:201–211. © 2009 SETAC

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