• Ozark Plateaus;
  • water quality;
  • hydrogeology;
  • pesticides;
  • agricultural land use;
  • karst

ABSTRACT: Pesticides were detected in ground-water samples collected from 20 springs and nine wells in the Ozark Plateaus Province of Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. From April through September 1993, water samples were collected from 50 shallow domestic wells and 50 springs in the Springfield Plateau and Ozark aquifers and analyzed for 47 pesticides and metabolites. Pesticides were detected in 17 water samples from the Springfield Plateau aquifer and 12 water samples from the Ozark aquifer. Fourteen pesticides were detected, with a maximum of four pesticides detected in any one sample. The most commonly detected pesticides were atrazine (14 detections), prometon (11 detections), and tebuthiuron (seven detections). P, P' DDE, a metabolite of DDT, was detected in water samples from three wells and one spring. The remaining pesticides were detected in three or less samples. The occurrence and distribution of pesticides probably are related to the local land use near a sampling site. Pesticide detections were significantly related to aquifer, site type, and discharge of springs.