Sedimentation in a Tupelo-Baldcypress Wetland 12 Years Following Harvest Distubance


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Virginia Tech


Sediment accumulation and loss were measured in a water tupelo (Nyssa aquatica)- baldcypress (Taxodium distichum) forested wetlandin years 2, 7, 10 and 12 following harvesting disturbance.

A 3 X 3 Latin Square design was replicated three times and compared to a psuedo-replicate reference stand (REF).

Disturbance treatments were chainsaw fellind of trees with (1) helicopter removal of logs (HELI), (2) helicopter removal of logs followed by a simulated skidder removal (SKID), and helicopter removal of logs follwed by glyphosphate application (GLYPH).

Measurements of sediment accretion show little difference between treatments and reference in the first two years following harvest. After two years the harvest treatments accumulate more sediment than the REF.

Of the harvest treatments, the GLYPH plots accumulate the greatest quantities of sediment. The difference in sediment accretion between the harvest treatments begins to fade in the 12th year of recovery. Results show that skidder and helicopter removal of logs differ very little in the amount of sediment trapped, while glyphosphate application increased the wetland's ability to trap sediment beginning in the second year.

In addition, sediment trappin is associated with herbaceous cover that slows flood waters and allows soil particles to precipitate from flood water.



temporal patterns, harvest treatment, accretion and erosion, tupelo-baldcypress forested wetland, sedimentation