The strontium isotope distribution in water and fish within major South African catchments

Jordaan, L.J., Wepener, V., and Huizenga, Jan (2016) The strontium isotope distribution in water and fish within major South African catchments. Water SA, 42 (2). pp. 213-224.

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Strontium has 4 naturally-occurring isotopes (84Sr, 86Sr, 87Sr, 88Sr) all of which are stable (Faure, 1986). Thee correlation between the 87Sr/86Sr isotope ratio of lake water and fish fin spine tissue was investigated in 23 lakes within 4 major South African catchments. Data showed that fish within a specific lake all have the same Sr isotope ratio in their fin spine tissue regardless of species, age, sex and condition. The origin of the dissolved Sr fraction in lake water can be either from the natural weathering of upstream geological units or from an upstream anthropogenic source. The Sr isotopic ratios of the water samples were, however, constant over a multi-year period suggesting that the main source may be the more consistent geological environment. The Sr isotope ratio of river and lake water generally increases along the course of the rivers within the tertiary catchments of the areas investigated. In large rivers like the Vaal, where pollution also plays a role, the pattern is much more complicated. In the Olifants River catchment, Lake Middelburg, Lake Witbank and Lake Doornpoort have a similar Sr isotope ratio, which is distinct from Lake Bronkhorstspruit. Lake Loskop which is downstream from these lakes has a Sr isotope ratio between these two extremes, indicating mixing of water from upstream sources. Similarly Lake Arabie (Flag Boshielo), which is even further downstream, shows a Sr isotope composition between the composition of Lake Loskop and the lakes in the Elands River.

Item ID: 44071
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1816-7950
Keywords: strontium isotope, 87Sr/86Sr, lake water, fish fin spine, water chemistry, Lake Loskop
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Published under a Creative Commons Attribution Licence

Funders: University of Johannesburg, Council for Geoscience (CGS)
Date Deposited: 09 Aug 2016 01:37
FoR Codes: 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4105 Pollution and contamination > 410501 Environmental biogeochemistry @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9699 Other Environment > 969999 Environment not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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