Studies on the Physicochemical Properties and Heavy Metal Load in Water and Sediment from Selected Surface Water of the Niger Delta, Nigeria

  • M.C Green Department of Biology, Federal University of Technology, Owerri Imo State Nigeria
  • F.O.U Osuala Department of Biology, Federal University of Technology, Owerri Imo State Nigeria
  • R.I. Okechukwu Department of Biology, Federal University of Technology, Owerri Imo State Nigeria
  • P.N Abara Department of Biology, Federal University of Technology, Owerri Imo State Nigeria
Keywords: Heavy metal, Water, Sediment, Surface water, Niger Delta


Environmental pollution by toxic heavy metals does not only elicit concern in metropolitan cities but also in remote and rural communities where anthropogenic activities are taking place. The study was carried out to assess physicochemical properties and heavy metal levels in water and sediment from selected surface water of the Niger Delta. Water and sediment samples were collected from 3 (three) chosen points in each River and were analyzed for physicochemical properties and heavy metal levels of heavy metals using standard analytical methods. The results obtained revealed marked variations and non-uniform distribution of all the physicochemical parameters across the Rivers studied with values that fall below the WHO standard limit for drinking water. Analysis of variance revealed that there was a significant difference (P < 0.05) between the parameters based on locations. The concentration of heavy metals in water and sediment around the vicinity of the Rivers revealed a spatial and non-uniform distribution in the concentration of the selected heavy metals in all the locations studied. The concentration of heavy metal determined in water and sediment was generally high in the sampled areas than in the control. Correlated heavy metal in water and sediment connotes that the metals may have similar behavior and implies they could have a common origin. Further study on the actual levels of potential risks to consumers in the vicinity of these Rivers is recommended.


Download data is not yet available.


Oyakhilome GI, Adefemi SO, Asaolu SS, Aiyesanmi AF. Interrelationship of Heavy Metals Concentration in water, sediment and fish samples from Owena multi-purpose Dam, Ondo state, Southern Nigeria. Journal of Emerging Trends in Engineering and Applied Sciences. 2013 Apr 1;4(2):207-15.

Etim E. E., Ogah E. And Eneji S. I. (2013). Seasonal variation of physicochemical properties of selected Revers in North Central states of Nigeria: Intern.J. Modern Anal. Separation sciences, 2(1): pp. 31 - 38.UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund (2003). Global Population and water access and Sustainability, Population and Development Strategies Series. New York, NY10017.

Avishai N, Rabinowitz C, Moiseeva E, Rinkevich B. Genotoxicity of the Kishon River, Israel: the application of an in vitro cellular assay. Mutation Research/Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis. 2002 Jun 27;518(1):21-37.

Tamie MS, Rigonato J, Mantovani MS, Marin-Morales MA. Evaluation of the genotoxic potential due to the action of an effluent contaminated with chromium, by the comet assay in CHO-K1 cultures. Caryologia. 2005 Jan 1;58(1):40-6.

Wium-Andersen T, Nielsen AH, Hvitved-Jakobsen T, Vollertsen J. Heavy metals, PAHs and toxicity in stormwater wet detention ponds. Water Science and Technology. 2011 Jul;64(2):503-11.

Okafor EC, Opuene K. Preliminary assessment of trace metals and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in the sediments. International journal of environmental science & technology. 2007 Mar;4(2):233-40.

Fagbote OE, Olanipekun EO. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHS) and Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in soils of Agbabu, Nigeria. European Scientific Journal. 2013 Jul 12;9(21).

Brown JN, Peake BM. Sources of heavy metals and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in urban stormwater runoff. Science of the total environment. 2006 Apr 15;359(1-3):145-55.

Anneli Widenfalk (2002) pesticide bioavailability in aquatic sediments. IMA Report, ISSN 1403 - 977X pp. 1 - 31.

Ukoha PO, Ekere NR, Udeogu UV, Agbazue VE. Potential health risk assessment of heavy metals [Cd, Cu and Fe] concentrations in some imported frozen fish species consumed in Nigeria.

Kumar B, Mukherjee DP, Kumar S, Mishra M, Prakash D, Singh SK, Sharma CS. Bioaccumulation of heavy metals in muscle tissue of fishes from selected aquaculture ponds in east Kolkata wetlands. Annals of Biological research. 2011;2(5):125-34.

Temitope AE, Bobo EC. An assessment of composition and diversity of fin fish in the upper course of Otamiri river, Imo State, South-Eastern Nigeria. Int J Hydro. 2020;4(4):146-50.

Azua ET, Akaahan TJ, Akogwu SA. Variation in the morphometric measurements of two tilapia fish species in relation to their body weight obtained from lower Benue River at makurdi, Benue state Nigeria. Fisheries Aquaculture Journal. 2017 Aug 1;8(208):10-4172.

Ekokotu PA. Condition factor, size distribution and length-weight relationship of the Claroteslaticeps (Claroteidae) in the lower River Niger.

Ezeronye, O., & Ubalua, A.O. (2005). African Biotechnology. 4(3), 260-266.

Adaka GS, Nlewadim AA, Udoh JP. Diversity and Distribution of Freshwater Fishes in Oguta Lake, Southeast Nigeria. Advances in Life Science and Technology. 2016;46:25-32.

El-Moselhy KM. Accumulation of copper, cadmium and lead in some fish from the Guif of suez. Egyptian Journal of Aquatic Biology and Fisheries. 2000;3(1).

Abdallah MA. Trace element levels in some commercially valuable fish species from coastal waters of Mediterranean Sea, Egypt. Journal of Marine Systems. 2008 Sep 1;73(1-2):114-22.

Nweeze NO, Mahmood LB, Aisha UI. Lithological Studies and Aigal diversity, the useful fool for assessment of fish pond water quality. Asian Academic Research Journal of Mullidisplinatin Auline. 2014;5(2):14-9.

Olin M, Malinen T, Ruuhijärvi J. Gillnet catch in estimating the density and structure of fish community—comparison of gillnet and trawl samples in a eutrophic lake. Fisheries Research. 2009 Feb 1;96(1):88-94.

Omitoyin B, Ajani E. Feeding habits and bioaccumulation of heavy metals in fishes of lake Eleyele, Ibadan, Nigeria. Journal of Afrotropical. 2007:12-65.

Onuoha GC, Ekpo IE, Chude LA, Isangedighi IA. Composite preliminary ichthyofaunal survey of Ntak Inyang stream, Ikpa river, Nigeria. Nigerian Journal of Agriculture, Food and Environment. 2010;6(1&2):82-9.

Imorou RS, Adite A, Adjibade NK, Arame H, Sonon SP, Abou Y. Fish biodiversity and community structure of Okpara stream, Oueme River, Benin, West Africa: Risk of high predation and food-web alteration.

Robert, R. Stickney (2017): Aquaculture: An Introductory text. 3rd Ed. CAB Int. 213.

Zhao S, Feng C, Quan W, Chen X, Niu J, Shen Z. Role of living environments in the accumulation characteristics of heavy metals in fishes and crabs in the Yangtze River Estuary, China. Marine pollution bulletin. 2012 Jun 1;64(6):1163-71.

Nacher - Mester J., Serrano R., Benedito - Palos L., Navarro C. J., Lopez J. F., Kaushik S. And Perez-Sanchez J. (2010) Bioacceumulation of Polycyclic aromatic Hydrocarbons in

Nácher-Mestre J, Serrano R, Benedito-Palos L, Navarro JC, López FJ, Kaushik S, Pérez-Sánchez J. Bioaccumulation of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in gilthead sea bream (Sparus aurata L.) exposed to long term feeding trials with different experimental diets. Archives of environmental contamination and toxicology. 2010 Jul;59(1):137-46.

Pruski AM, Dixon DR. Effects of cadmium on nuclear integrity and DNA repair efficiency in the gill cells of Mytilus edulis L. Aquatic toxicology. 2002 May 1;57(3):127-37.

Lee RF, Steinert S. Use of the single cell gel electrophoresis/comet assay for detecting DNA damage in aquatic (marine and freshwater) animals. Mutation Research/Reviews in Mutation Research. 2003 Sep 1;544(1):43-64.

Matsumoto ST. Efeitos tóxicos e genotóxicos de metais pesados, especificamente do cromo trivalente e hexavalente. Monografia (doutorado) Universidade Estadual Paulista. 2003.

Santodonato J., Howard P. and Basu D., Health and Ecological assessment of Polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons, J. Environ. Pathol. Toxicol. 1981,5:1-36.

Black JA, Birge WJ, Westerman AG, Francis PC. Comparative aquatic toxicology of aromatic hydrocarbons. Fundamental and Applied Toxicology. 1983 Sep 1;3(5):353-8.

Germain A, Perron F, Van Coillie R. PAHs in the environment: fate, ecotoxicity and regulations. Environment Canada, Conservation and Protection, Quebec Region, Montreal, Que. 1993.

How to Cite
Green, M., Osuala, F., Okechukwu, R., & Abara, P. (2022). Studies on the Physicochemical Properties and Heavy Metal Load in Water and Sediment from Selected Surface Water of the Niger Delta, Nigeria. Journal of Environmental Treatment Techniques, 10(4), 251-256.
Regular publication process