Land Degrad. Develop. 27: 1721–1730 (2016)
Small-arms firing ranges are an important source of metal contaminants in the ecosystems located near these facilities, owing to the constant fall and alteration of the ammunition remnants on the soil, particularly in nearby berms. The objectives of this study were to analyse the pollution of chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), nickel (Ni), lead (Pb) and zinc (Zn) in rifle/pistol shooting range soils, to estimate their availability and to evaluate the influence of the ammunition used. The concentrations of Pb, Zn, Cu, Cr and Ni range from 55 to 6·309, 34 to 264, 19 to 98, 40 to 79 and 11 to 33 mg kg 1, respectively. The moderate acidity and organic matter content favour the availability of Pb, followed by Cu > Zn > Ni > Cr. The values of different contamination indexes (Igeo, pollution index and integrated pollution index) suggest that Pb soil contamination is moderate to heavy, especially in the berm area and moderate for Cu and Zn. Lead ammunition is the main source of pollution, but another one was identified owing to the concentrations of Fe, Cr and Ni detected. Further studies are needed to verify their long-term potential adverse effects.