The adsorption rate of a guanidine-resistant strain of poliovirus LSc 2ab was measured in Long Island soils with in situ field cores (10.1 by 75 cm). The test virus was chosen because it exhibited soil adsorption and elution characteristics of a number of non-polioviruses. After the inoculation of cores with seeded sewage effluent at a 1-cm/h infiltration rate, cores were extracted, fractionated, and analyzed for total plaque-forming units per each 5-cm fraction. The results showed that 77% of the viruses were adsorbed in the first 5 cm of soil. An additional 11% were found in the 5- to 10-cm fraction, and a total of 96% of the viruses were adsorbed by 25 cm. The remaining 4% were uniformly distributed over the next 50 cm of soil, with a minimum of 0.23% in each soil section. Few viruses (less than 0.22%) were observed in core filtrates. Analysis of the viral distribution pattern in seeded cores, after an application of a single rinse of either sewage effluent or rainwater, indicated that large-scale viral mobilization was absent. However, localized areas of viral movement were noted in both of the rinsed cores, with the rainwater-rinsed cores exhibiting more extensive movement. All mobilized viruses were resorbed at lower core depths.