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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Rehabilitation of a Severed Meander Bendway: Effects of Flow Augmentation on Water Quality

Authors
item Cooper, Charles
item Lizotte, Richard
item Shields Jr, Fletcher

Submitted to: North American Benthological Society Bulletin
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: May 10, 2006
Publication Date: June 4, 2006
Citation: Cooper, C.M., Lizotte Jr, R.E., Shields Jr, F.D. 2006. Rehabilitation of a severed meander bendway: effects of flow augmentation on water quality. North American Benthological Society Bulletin. 23(1):376-377.

Interpretive Summary: Abstract only. Interpretative summary not required.

Technical Abstract: Seasonal flooding of large riverine systems into floodplain backwaters, e.g., severed meander bendways, is important for maintaining ecologically diverse aquatic habitats. However, changes in landscape due to intensive cultivation practices and development within the past century accelerated water quality degradation, habitat loss, and extinction rates of resident fauna. The study, conducted in a 2.5 km long severed meander bendway adjacent to the Coldwater River in Tunica Co., Mississippi, compared effects of 30-day flow augmentation on water quality to 28-day pre-treatment and 26-day post-treatment periods. In-situ parameters (temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, conductivity) were measured every 30 min at two of three sites. Solids (total dissolved and suspended) and nutrients (phosphorus and nitrogen) were measured at three sites and the Coldwater River (water source) every 3-5 days. Decreases in amplitude of diel cycles in temperature, dissolved oxygen, and pH were associated with changes in water depth and flow due to treatment. Solids (dissolved and suspended) and nutrients (nitrates, nitrites and soluble orthophosphates) were also associated with influx of river water (treatment). Total phosphorus and Ammonium patterns were more complex due to differences in utilization by autotrophs (measured as chlorophyll a). Flow augmentation stabilized water quality and improved habitat for aquatic biota.

Last Modified: 4/19/2014
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