Data to: Dropping the microbead: Source and sink related microplastic distribution in the Black Sea and Caspian Sea basins
Date of Archiving2021
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Animal Ecology & Physiology
Key wordscity; depth; grain size; Ponto-Caspian; river; shore
Microplastic pollution is a growing, yet poorly understood problem. Here, we assessed the relationship between microplastic concentration and distance to rivers, shorelines, cities, sediment grain size or water depth in sediments of the world’s largest (semi-)enclosed aquatic basins. Microplastic was extracted from sediment using density separation and elutriation. Fibers and transparent or white microplastic particles were the most abundant shape and color. The microplastic concentration in sediments of the Black Sea was about twice as high compared to that in the Caspian Sea. Fragment concentrations decreased with depth, while fiber concentrations were independent of depth. Overall, no relationship with distance to shores, rivers and cities or with grain size was observed. However, within some depth classes concentrations were related to the distance from rivers, shores and cities.