Soil provides the necessary nutrients for plant life in our climate, but it also serves plants as a source of many toxins by absorbing toxic substances from their root in the soil. The research was carried out to determine the effects of heavy metal pollution in agricultural soils in the Maiganga area of Gombe State, Nigeria. The community is famous for its deposit of coal which has attracted miners to the area. A total of 27 soil samples were obtained from nine different farmlands in the community at 0-30 cm depth. The samples were wet digested and analyzed for heavy metals (Pb, Co, Cd, Mn, Cu and Cr) using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS). The results revealed that the concentration of the heavy metals in soil samples were in ranges 0.747-1.167 mg/kg lead; 0.003-2.85 mg/kg cobalt; 0.11-0.22 mg/kg cadmium; 0.59-3.65 mg/kg manganese. The concentration of copper and chromium was below detected in all the soil samples. All the studied metals were below the permissible limit set by World Health Organization (WHO). Periodic monitoring should be regularly carryout and encouraged by all stakeholders to ensure early detection of metals contents in agricultural soils.
Keywords: Heavy metals, Agricultural soils, Effects, Pollution, Concentration, Soil