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Nitrapyrin in streams: The first study documenting off-field transport of a nitrogen stabilizer compound

December 1, 2016

Nitrapyrin is a bactericide that is co-applied with fertilizer to prevent nitrification and enhance corn yields. While there have been studies of the environmental fate of nitrapyrin, there is no documentation of its off-field transport to streams. In 2016, 59 water samples from 11 streams across Iowa were analyzed for nitrapyrin and its degradate, 6-chloropicolinic acid (6-CPA), along with three widely used herbicides, acetochlor, atrazine, and metolachlor. Nitrapyrin was detected in seven streams (39% of water samples) with concentrations ranging from 12 to 240 ng/L; 6-CPA was never detected. The herbicides were ubiquitously detected (100% of samples, 28–16000 ng/L). Higher nitrapyrin concentrations in streams were associated with rainfall events following spring fertilizer applications. Nitrapyrin persisted in streams for up to 5 weeks. These results highlight the need for more research focused on the environmental fate and transport of nitrapyrin and the potential toxicity this compound could have on nontarget organisms.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2016
Title Nitrapyrin in streams: The first study documenting off-field transport of a nitrogen stabilizer compound
DOI 10.1021/acs.estlett.6b00348
Authors Emily Woodward, Michelle Hladik, Dana W. Kolpin
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Environmental Science & Technology Letters
Series Number
Index ID 70178884
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization California Water Science Center