Influence of chloride on the chronic toxicity of sodium nitrate to Ceriodaphnia dubia and Hyalella azteca

David J. Soucek, Amy Dickinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


While it has been well established that increasing chloride concentration in water reduces the toxicity of nitrite to freshwater species, little work has been done to investigate the effect of chloride on nitrate toxicity. We conducted acute and chronic nitrate (as sodium nitrate) toxicity tests with the cladoceran Ceriodaphnia dubia and the amphipod Hyalella azteca (chronic tests only) over a range of chloride concentrations spanning natural chloride levels found in surface waters representative of watersheds of the Great Lakes Region. Chronic nitrate toxicity test results with both crustaceans were variable, with H. azteca appearing to be one of the more sensitive invertebrate species tested and C. dubia being less sensitive. While the variability in results for H. azteca were to an extent related to chloride concentration in test water that was distinctly not the case for C. dubia. We concluded that the chloride dependent toxicity of nitrate is not universal among freshwater crustaceans. An additional sodium chloride chronic toxicity test with the US Lab strain of H. azteca in the present study suggested that when present as predominantly sodium chloride and with relatively low concentrations of other ions, there is a narrow range of chloride concentrations over which this strain is most fit, and within which toxicity test data are reliable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1406-1416
Number of pages11
Issue number7
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • Acute nitrate toxicity
  • Ceriodaphnia dubia
  • Chronic chloride toxicity
  • Chronic nitrate toxicity
  • Hyalella azteca

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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