Alaksen National Wildlife Area: Reservoir suitability for the introduction of the endangered Western Painted Turtle

Author: 
Date created: 
2019-04-16
Identifier: 
etd20319
Keywords: 
Western Painted Turtles
Ecotoxicology
Risk assessment
Agricultural reservoir
Heavy metal
Endocrine disruptors
Abstract: 

Alaksen National Wildlife Area located in Delta, BC is home to freshwater species in the former tidal marsh. The current agricultural landscape has left a legacy of high concentrations of heavy metals, trace amounts of organochlorine pesticides, and excess nutrients within the sediments and water of the brackish Fuller and Ewen Reservoirs. Arsenic and phosphorous exceeded Canadian water quality guidelines, while arsenic, chromium, copper, iron, manganese, nickel, and phosphorus exceeded sediment quality guidelines. There were trace pesticides known to be endocrine disrupters detected in the water and sediment, and combined low level toxicity effects are a concern. A preliminary ecological risk assessment on the metals was completed and the results indicate that there is a possibility of adverse effects for benthic invertebrates, but negligible risk for endangered Western Painted Turtles. However, compounding all the ecosystem stressors along with rising sea levels leads ANWA not an ideal place to introduce this species.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
Rights: 
This thesis may be printed or downloaded for non-commercial research and scholarly purposes. Copyright remains with the author.
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Vicki Marlatt
Department: 
Environment: Ecological Restoration
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.Sc.
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