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Spectral properties of some west coast waters and their relationship with dissolved organic carbon

, : Spectral properties of some west coast waters and their relationship with dissolved organic carbon. Mauri Ora 14: 25-32

Water samples were collected from 40 West Coast stream and river sites and analysed for dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and absorbance at 320 nm. Extinction coefficients (E430) and E4/E6 ratios were calculated for samples from 22 of these sites. DOC concentration ranged from 1.6-43.2 g m-3 and was related linearly to absorbance at 320 nm. The equation describing the relationship (DOC (g m-3) = 34.98A1cm + 1.55) was comparable to equations by other works at similar wavelengths. A curvilinear relationship was found between DOC concentration and E4/E6 ratios (range 1.8-14.0) suggesting that proportionately more low molecular weight humic substances were present in brown waters than in clear waters. Extinction coefficients ranged from 0.0005 to 0.0047 and were correlated significantly with E4/E6 ratios indicating that low molecular weight humic substances absorbed more light per unit organic carbon than humic materials of higher apparent molecular weight.

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