• statistical analysis;
  • water quality;
  • pesticides;
  • surface water

ABSTRACT: The predominant mixtures of pesticides found in New York surface waters consist of five principal components. First, herbicides commonly used on corn (atrazine, metolachlor, alachlor, cyanazine) and a herbicide degradate (deethylatrazine) were positively correlated to a corn-herbicide component, and watersheds with the highest corn-herbicide component scores were those in which large amounts of row crops are grown. Second, two insecticides (diazinon and carbaryl) and one herbicide (prometon) widely used in urban and residential settings were positively correlated to an urban/residential component. Watersheds with the highest urban/residential component scores were those with large amounts of urban and residential land use. A third component was related to two herbicides (EPTC and cyanazine) used on dry beans and corn, the fourth to an herbicide (simazine) and an insecticide (carbaryl) commonly used in orchards and vineyards, and the fifth to an herbicide (DCPA). Results of this study indicate that this approach can be used to: (1) identify common mixtures of pesticides in surface waters, (2) relate these mixtures to land use and pesticide applications, and (3) indicate regions where these mixtures of pesticides are commonly found.