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Nutrient concentrations in four Darwin Region streams



Nutrient concentrations in four Darwin Region streams


Schult, Julia

Issued by

Northern Territory. Department of Environment and Natural Resources. Water Monitoring Branch. Natural Resource Management Division. Conversation and Natural Resources


E-Publications; E-Books; PublicationNT; Report 24/2004




Darwin Region


In this study, the nutrient content of three rural streams and one urban drain in the Darwin region are examined. The aims of this study were to: • Record nutrient concentrations in the four waterways. • determine the proportions of nutrients available in soluble, and inorganic or particulate form. • determine differences in nutrient composition between baseflow and storm flow periods. • determine seasonal differences in nutrient fractionation. • compare nutrient contents of streams that drain catchments with different land uses and varying degrees of development.


Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).

Table of contents

Introduction -- Methods -- Results and Discussion -- Conclusion -- References




Water Quality; Nutrient capacity; Chemical analysis; Suspended solids

Publisher name

Northern Territory Government

Place of publication



Report 24/2004


iv, 23 [5] pages : charts ; 30 cm

File type



Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

Copyright owner

Northern Territory Government



Parent handle


Citation address


Page content

Nutrient concentrations in four Darwin region streams 6 Table 2. Summary statistics for background water quality of Bees Creek (BC) and Elizabeth River (ER) for the 2002/03 wet season. Turbidity (NTU) Temp (C) pH Conductivity (S/cm) D.O (mg/l) Bees Creek Elizabeth River BC ER BC ER BC ER BC ER Median 7.8 7.2 28.0 27.9 6.34 6.58 21.9 35.1 6.80 5.97 Mean 11.3 10.7 27.2 27.6 6.38 6.59 24.6 39.2 6.79 5.77 SD 9.8 7.6 2.3 1.9 0.16 0.13 8.0 14.5 0.49 1.01 N 22 23 23 23 23 23 23 23 23 23 3.2 Nitrogen 3.2.1 Total N concentrations Median total N concentrations ranged from 0.19 mg/L in Berry Creek to 1.07 mg/L in the Winnellie Drain. Bees Creek and Elizabeth River showed intermediate median concentrations of 0.23 and 0.30 mg/L respectively (Table 3). Although the Bees Creek catchment is 73% cleared, it has nevertheless had similar total N concentrations to Berry and Elizabeth River catchments which are, respectively, 37% and 28% cleared. Total N concentrations are substantially higher in the Winnellie Drain. Both Bees Creek and Elizabeth River showed strong seasonal differences in total N, with higher concentrations in the early wet season and a subsequent rapid decrease in total N within the first one or two months of the beginning of flow (Figure 2). This pattern may indicate an exhaustion of the nutrient supply of material that has built up during the dry months.

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