In this work, a silica surface chemically modified with [3-(2,2'-dipyridylamine)propyl] groups, named [3-(2,2'-dipyridylamine)propyl]silica (Si-Pr-DPA) was prepared, characterized, and evaluated for its heavy metal adsorption characteristics from aqueous solution. To our knowledge, we are the first authors who have reported the present modification. The material was characterized using infrared spectroscopy, SEM, and NMR (29) Si and (13) C solid state. Batch and column experiments were conducted to investigate for heavy metal removal from dilute aqueous solution by sorption onto Si-Pr-DPA. From a number of studies the affinity of various metal ions for the Si-Pr-DPA sorbent was determined to follow the order Fe(III) > Cr(III) >> Cu(II) > Cd(II) > Pb(II) > Ni(II). Two standard reference materials were used for checking the accuracy and precision of the method. The proposed method was successfully applied to the analysis of environmental samples. This ligand material has great advantage for adsorption of transition-metal ions from aqueous medium due to its high degree of organofunctionalization associated with the large adsorption capacity, reutilization possibility, and rapidity in reaching the equilibrium. © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.