Can turbidity caused by Corophium volutator (Pallas) activity be used to assess sediment toxicity rapidly?

Andrew D. Briggs, Naomi Greenwood, Alastair Grant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The standard toxicity test organism, Corophium volutator, exhibits a behavioural response to contaminated sediments that causes increased turbidity of overlying water. We quantify the effects of this response to an estuarine sediment spiked with copper and hydrocarbon contaminated sediments from an oil installation in the North Sea. Turbidity measured 24 h after the start of a toxicity test shows a strong relationship with contaminant concentrations and with mortality after 10 days. Turbidity measurements can therefore give a rapid indication of sediment toxicity, permitting a reduction in storage time of sediments to be used in dilution series and toxicity identification evaluation (TIE) tests, reducing the likelihood of contaminants degrading prior to testing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-192
Number of pages12
JournalMarine Environmental Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2003


  • Corophium volutator
  • copper
  • hydrocarbons
  • turbidity
  • sediment toxicity

Cite this