Heavy metal concentrations in some non-vascular plants in an Amazonian rainforest

Florencia Montagnini, Howard S. Neufeld, Christopher Uhl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The presence of acid rain in the remote Amazon rainforest of southwestern Venezuela suggests the possibility of long-range transport of industrial pollutants to that region. Heavy metal concentrations were analyzed in samples of bryophytes and epiphyllous organisms growing on leaves and on bark in this forest. Concentrations of Cd, Pb, Ni, and Cr were higher in leaves with epiphylls than in leaves without epiphylls. All heavy metal concentrations in bryophytes from the Amazon basin site were lower than in bryophytes from temperature zones. The results indicate that long-range transport of air pollutants from industrial centers to the remote Amazon basin is occurring at only extremely low rates. Heavy metal concentrations in bryophytes and epiphylls at this site may still be considered close to present day background levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)317-321
Number of pages5
JournalWater, Air, and Soil Pollution
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - Jan 1984

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecological Modeling
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Pollution


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