Tuesday, October 31, 2006

HOORC research on Okavango water balance

Water balance and infiltration in a seasonal floodplain in the Okavango Delta, Botswana by Lars Ramberg, Piotr Wolski and Martin Krah was published in the September 2006 issue of the journal Wetlands. The researchers studied an Okavango Delta floodplain over three years. They discovered that infiltration values in the floodplain are high compared to other large recharge wetlands (e.g., the Everglades, the Hadejia-Nguru) and result from a combination of lack of a low permeability surface layer in the floodplain and strong drainage of floodplain ground water, driven by evaporation from the surrounding drylands. High infiltration and lateral ground-water flows have major implications for Okavango Delta ecology, as they provide water to riparian vegetation, affect floodplain nutrient balance, and are part of the process responsible for immobilization of dissolved minerals. You can find the article in HOORC's Library.

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