Geomorphic and hydrologic effects on nutrient distribution in riparian areas surrounding the Sooke Lake Reservoir.




Bryant, Deborah

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We examined the physical and chemical soil characteristics in the cleared riparian areas at the Sooke Lake Reservoir, where the growing population has necessitated the expansion of the drinking water reservoir in Victoria, British Columbia. Additionally, hydrologic functioning was studied to establish the pathways riparian nutrients followed to the reservoir. In order to understand the potential release of nitrogen and phosphorous following inundation, both saturated riparian and upland areas were chosen as part of 17 transects encompassing the entire reservoir in four major soil types (Morainal, Colluvial, Fluvial and Organic). Various nutrient concentrations (TDP, TP. PO43- DOC, TC, IC, NO3-, NO2, NH4+, TN, TDN) were measured in relation to geomorphic features. Areal analyses confirm the hypotheses that nutrient concentrations differ with soil type, depth (0-10 cm, 10-30 cm, 30-60 cm) and hill slope. Hydrologic data established that seasonality and therefore transect connectivity is an important aspect for nutrient transport in the riparian areas via leaching and preferential flowpaths.



riparian, soils, nutrients, hydrology