US Fish & Wildlife Service


Date of this Version



Published in Contaminant Report Number: R6/701C /92, 1-50, (1992)


Sediment, water and biota were collected from selected wetlands in Wyoming for the Biologically Active Elements (BAE) Study in 1988, 1989 and 1990 to identify contaminant problems that may warrant further study. This report also will assist in developing a comprehensive contaminants monitoring program for the state and will provide baseline contaminants data for wetland areas. Sites surveyed included areas affected by historical and current mining; wetlands receiving oilfield or oil refinery discharges; wetlands receiving irrigation return flows; stock ponds and natural depressions in areas with seleniferous soils and wetlands influenced by urban runoff. Monitoring is recommended for wetlands receiving oilfield produced waters and agricultural return flows. An intensive study is necessary to determine the impacts of oilfield produced waters on breeding aquatic birds. Areas with intensive agriculture, such as the Greybull River Valley and Bighorn Basin, require periodic monitoring to determine if return flows and or pesticide applications are adversely impacting migratory birds. Land management agencies proposing to develop wetlands in areas underlain with Cretaceous shale should be made aware of the selenium hazards to fish and wildlife.