2015 GSA Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, USA (1-4 November 2015)

Paper No. 106-15
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:30 PM


PARDO, Lorena1, ALCANTARA, Ace2, ZAMAN, Ashfaque3 and DHAR, Ratan2, (1)Earth and Physical Sciences (EHS major), York College of the City University of New York, 94-20, Guy R. Brewer Blvd, Jamaica, NY 11451, (2)Earth and Physical Sciences, York College of the City University of New York, 94-20, Guy R. Brewer Blvd, Jamaica, NY 11451, (3)John Bowne High School, 63-25 Main St, Flushing, NY 11367, lorena.pardo@yorkmail.cuny.edu

Anthropogenic activities cause an increase of organic materials and nutrients and this poses a serious threat in urban environments. The densities of fecal indicator bacteria (FIBs) in the urban area exhibit a clear land-use dependency in the natural water and are often linked with nutrient inputs. This research was conducted to investigate the relationship of microbes found in water and soil. The study has been carried out on occurrence of Fecal Indicative Bacteria in two parks of Queens county: Flushing Meadow Park and Kissena Park with intense and less recreational activities respectively. EPA approved IDEXX method was used to detect the Fecal Indicative Bacteria (FIBs) including total coliforms, E. coli and enterococcus. We hypothesized that there would be more microbes found in water after raining due to movement of microbes from soil to water as runoff. Variation in FIBs occurrence were investigated by capturing different weather conditions, activity level, soil type and water content of soil.

Data from preliminary investigation indicated elevated FIBs in soil and water of a NYC lake. Very few studies on mobilization of FIBs in natural water from surrounding soils were reported in NYC area. In an attempt to study temporal and spatial bio-geochemical dynamics of both fresh and brackish water lake environments, the study was done in two NYC lakes that vary in terms of recreational activities and different environmental settings. This study focused on environmental research to improve understanding of FIBs transport processes in the environmental system which is a critical aspect of decision-making in risk assessment, and remediation strategies. Preliminary results were found to exceed the EPA permissible limit for total Coliform, E. coli and Enterococci respectively. Soil microbes showed a wide range of counts.