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Ephemeral hydrological processes in savannas
Expanded Title:There is a tight coupling of hydrological, geological and ecological processes in the semi-arid setting of the lowveld savannas of South Africa. In the Kruger National Park (KNP) this has resulted in distinct landscape patterns closely organised around the hierarchical drainage network of seasonal and ephemeral streams which dominate the landscape. These patterns have resulted from a relatively stable geological template, the topographical redistribution of water and the resultant geomorphic setting one sees in the KNP today. Overtime this has led to the establishment of unique soil and vegetation assemblages in the landscape at both the hillslope and catchment scale. Four sites were established as Supersites in the KNP in 2011 and the research presented here focuses on two in the south of the park: Stevenson-Hamilton on granite (Southern Granites or SGR); and Nhlowa on basalt (Southern Basalt or SBAS). Both sites are situated on the hydrological divide (watershed) between the perennial Sabie and Crocodile Rivers. The hydrological approach was the same for both sites in order to allow for inter-comparison of hydrological connectivity across geological settings and included: intensive geophysical surveys; drilling and characterisation of a piezometric borehole network; ephemeral streamflow gauging; hydro-chemical tracer sampling; hydro-pedological classification of catena sequences; associated soil moisture monitoring network; quantification of catena actual evapotranspiration through remote sensing, and a variety of other factors.
Date Published:01/12/2014
Document Type:Research Report
Document Subjects:Water Resource Management/IWRM - Hydrogeology, R & D - Methodology
Document Keywords:Hydrology
Document Format:Report
Document File Type:pdf
Research Report Type:Technical
WRC Report No:TT 619/14
ISBN No:9781431206162
Authors:Riddell ES; Nel J; Fundisi D; Jumbi F; van Niekerk A; Lorentz SA
Project No:K5/2051
Originator:WRC
Organizations:University of KwaZuIu-Natal; University of the Western Cape
Document Size:9 342 KB
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