Pore water transport of enterococci out of beach sediments

Matthew C. Phillips, Helena M. Solo-Gabriele, A. J.H.M. Reniers, John D. Wang, Russell T. Kiger, Noha Abdel-Mottaleb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Enterococci are used to evaluate the safety of beach waters and studies have identified beach sands as a source of these bacteria. In order to study and quantify the release of microbes from beach sediments, flow column systems were built to evaluate flow of pore water out of beach sediments. Results show a peak in enterococci (average of 10% of the total microbes in core) released from the sand core within one pore water volume followed by a marked decline to below detection. These results indicate that few enterococci are easily removed and that factors other than simple pore water flow control the release of the majority of enterococci within beach sediments. A significantly larger quantity and release of enterococci were observed in cores collected after a significant rain event suggesting the influx of fresh water can alter the release pattern as compared to cores with no antecedent rainfall.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2293-2298
Number of pages6
JournalMarine Pollution Bulletin
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2011


  • Beach sand
  • Columns
  • Enterococci
  • Pore water
  • Sand cores

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Oceanography
  • Pollution


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