The Kizilirmak Delta is one of the most important agricultural production regions and it was included as part of the Ramsar Convention in 1998. The water used in agricultural irrigation is mostly supplied from drainage channels. In the present study, 120 water samples were collected from drainage channels and analyzed to characterize the groundwater chemistry and microbiological contamination. Sea water interface, discharge of sewage, wastewater from agricultural activities and livestock and uncontrolled solid waste landfills were identified as the most important pollutant sources in the delta. Serious microbiological pollution was detected in channel water samples. These results indicate that sewage waters mix with the channel waters in the delta. Also, the correlations of parameters such as EC, TDS, DO, Cl- and SO42- indicate that channel waters contain high dissolved minerals. It was concluded that especially agricultural pollution and waste water affects water resources negatively in the region. (C) 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.