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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

Did you know?

That fault line is the intersection of a fault with the surface of the earth or any other plane of reference [16].?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Karst environment, Culver D.C.
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, Bontognali, Tomaso R.R.; D’Angeli Ilenia M.; Tisato, Nicola; Vasconcelos, Crisogono; Bernasconi, Stefano M.; Gonzales, Esteban R. G.; De Waele, Jo
Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures, Tirato, Nicola; Torriano, Stefano F.F;, Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Lavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia Maria; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso Renzo Rezio
Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria), Briestensky, Milos; Rowberry, Matt; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, Petar; Vozar, Jozef; Sebela, Stanka; Petro, Lubomir; Bella, Pavel; Gaal, Ludovit; Ormukov, Cholponbek;
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Your search for quality (Keyword) returned 208 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 196 to 208 of 208
Regionalization Based on water Chemistry and Physicochemical Traits in the Ring of Cenotes, Yucatan, Mexico, 2012, Prezceballos R. , Pachecovila J. , Eunvila J. I. , Hernndezarana H.

 

Assessing water quality in aquifers has become increasingly important as water demand and pollution concerns rise. In the Yucatan Peninsula, sinkholes, locally known as cenotes, are karst formations that intercept the water table. Cenotes are distributed across the peninsula, but are particularly dense and aligned along a semicircular formation called the Ring of Cenotes. This area exhibits particular hydrogeological properties because it concentrates, channels, and discharges fresh water toward the coasts. In this study, we identify spatial and temporal variations in chemical and physical variables at twenty-two cenotes to identify groups that share similar characteristics. Water samples from each cenotes were taken at three depths (0.5, 5.5, and 10.5 m) and during three seasons (dry, rainy, and cold-fronts season). Field measurements of pH, temperature, electrical conductivity, and dissolved oxygen were taken, and the concentrations of major ions (K+, Na+, Mg2+, Ca2+, HCO{ 3 , SO2{ 4 , Cl2 and NO{ 3 ) were quantified. Identifying regions of the cenotes were done by applying multivariate statistical techniques (PCA, PERMANOVA, CAP). The chemical variables revealed spatial trends among the cenotes. We identified three main regions. Region 1 is associated with sea-water encroachment and high levels of sulfate that travel through preferential groundwater flowpaths from evaporites in the southern Yucatan Peninsula; Region 2 is a recharge zone, and Region 3 is characterized by sea water encroachment and by the high chemical and physical variability associated with groundwater flow from the east.


An assessment of capacity of Brestovica Klariči karst water supply (Slovenia) , 2012, Urbanc Janko, Mezga Kim, Zini Luca
In August 2008 an intensive pumping experiment was carried out in order to assess the capacity of Brestovica – Klarici water supply in summer conditions, and its chemical quality. Groundwater was pumped for a period of 30 days, from three wells at the Klarici pumping station, and from well B-10/06, with a common capacity of 470 L/s. The fact that pumping caused a decrease in the water table in well B-10/06 by only 17 cm at a pumping rate of 265 L/s suggests that larger quantities of groundwater could be pumped from this well. The tracer experiment, performed at the B-10/06 temporary pipeline discharge area, showed that no pumped water was returned to the area of the exploited wells during the pumping test. Tracer uranine, which had been injected at the effluent from the pumped water from the well, was detected only at the Sardos Spring. The intensive pumping resulted in changes in the chemical and isotopic composition of oxygen in the water, due to a greater impact of the water from the intergranular SocaRiver aquifer on the karst aquifer.The chemical quality of groundwater from well B-10/06 is adequate for the purpose of drinking water supply. The presence of bacteria in groundwater is typical of karst aquifers and the water needs to be disinfected for further use.

Preliminary study for the adaptation of the "Heaven's Cave" for tourist purposes (Phong Nha-Ke Bang national park, Vietnam) , 2012, Debevec Bogdan, Knez Martin, Kranjc Andrej, Pahor Marko, Prelovek Mitja, Semeja Ale, Slabe Tadej

Heaven’s Cave is located in the centre of the Phong Nha-Ke Bang national park, about 500  km southern from the Vietnamese capital and 40 km from the city of Dong Hoi. Phong Nha-Ke Bang national park is protected also as a UNESCO world heritage site. Due to weak economic situation in this region as a result of lack of natural resources, karst tourism represents an important opportunity for raising the quality of live in the province. A proposal to adapt non-touristic Heaven’s Cave for tourism was presented to Karst Research Institute ZRC SAZU in 2006. Because the caves are sensitive ecosystems and all activities in them should be carefully implemented, our task was to make basic survey and map the cave, to perform a speleological and touristic research, to propose possible interventions for adapting the cave for tourism and to prepare a strategy for tourism development in this area. The latter should also show us if some interest is present among tourists for new show cave in this region. From this point of view this study does not represent systematic long-term approach for adapting a cave for tourism but rather a short study of a cave with potential to be show cave in remote area of Central Vietnam. Approach used in this study should be used in similar environments as a first step to estimate if weakly known cave is environmentally and economically suitable for development for touristic purposes.


Monitoring of microbial indicator groups in caves through the use of RIDACOUNT kits, 2012, Mulec J. , Kristů, Fek V. , Chroň, Akova A.

RIDA®COUNT kitsMeasurements of microbiological parameters are not currently widely used for protection, monitoring and preservation of caves although they indicate very well the recent human impact. Here we present a commercially available microbiological kit for cave ecologists, the RIDA®COUNT test kit (R-Biopharm AG, Germany), as a supplementary tool for research and show examples. Simultaneously, lists of microbial indicator groups and cave microhabitats, where this methodology may be applied, are presented. Indicators include certain clinically important human-associated microbes such as Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp. and Staphylococcus aureus that are easy to quantify with basic cultivation methodology. Relatively higher bacterial counts compared to yeast and moulds on RIDA®COUNT test plates indicate recent and pronounced human impact. Swab samples allow detection of gradients of surface microbial colonization and determination of the microbial load on footprints and fingerprints in caves. In our tests, RIDA®COUNT plates for enumeration of yeast and moulds revealed a similar microbial load between unwashed caving boots and human fingerprints on a metal fence. Similarly, total bacterial counts were comparable between these two surfaces, 5,890 CFU/100 cm2 for unwashed boots and 4,340 CFU/100 cm2 for fingerprints on metal fence. Bacterial counts on walking surfaces in show caves can exceed 10,000 CFU/100 cm2 (Postojna Cave). These examples show that quantification of microbial indicator groups revealed increased microbial load and possible biohazard in the underground. This procedure may be widely adopted as a part of a regular monitoring programme in caves.


Monitoring of microbial indicator groups in caves through the use of RIDACOUNT kits, 2012, Mulec Janez Kritů, Fek Vclav, Chroň, kov Alica

 

RIDA®COUNT kitsMeasurements of microbiological parameters are not currently widely used for protection, monitoring and preservation of caves although they indicate very well the recent human impact. Here we present a commercially available microbiological kit for cave ecologists, the RIDA®COUNT test kit (R-Biopharm AG, Germany), as a supplementary tool for research and show examples. Simultaneously, lists of microbial indicator groups and cave microhabitats, where this methodology may be applied, are presented. Indicators include certain clinically important human-associated microbes such as Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp. and Staphylococcus aureus that are easy to quantify with basic cultivation methodology. Relatively higher bacterial counts compared to yeast and moulds on RIDA®COUNT test plates indicate recent and pronounced human impact. Swab samples allow detection of gradients of surface microbial colonization and determination of the microbial load on footprints and fingerprints in caves. In our tests, RIDA®COUNT plates for enumeration of yeast and moulds revealed a similar microbial load between unwashed caving boots and human fingerprints on a metal fence. Similarly, total bacterial counts were comparable between these two surfaces, 5,890 CFU/100 cm2 for unwashed boots and 4,340 CFU/100 cm2 for fingerprints on metal fence. Bacterial counts on walking surfaces in show caves can exceed 10,000 CFU/100 cm2 (Postojna Cave). These examples show that quantification of microbial indicator groups revealed increased microbial load and possible biohazard in the underground. This procedure may be widely adopted as a part of a regular monitoring programme in caves.
 

Paving the Way for Standardized and Comparable Subterranean Biodiversity Studies, 2013, David C Culver, Peter Trontelj, Maja Zagmajster, Tanja Pipan

A series of potential pitfalls (fallacies) in estimating subterranean biodiversity are outlined: (1) provincialism—treating different regions differently, especially with respect to new discoveries and undescribed species; (2) equality of described and undescribed species—ignoring the possibility that undescribed species are not really new species; (3) isotropy—assuming all cave regions of similar size have equally rich faunas; (4) scale invariance—ignoring the affect of area on species richness; and (5) misuse of expert opinion—the over-reliance on experts estimates often without comparable estimates for all areas. Some standard procedures are suggested for subterranean biodiversity studies, and the value of such studies is emphasized.


CONCEPTUALIZATION OF GROUNDWATER FLOW IN THE EDWARDS AQUIFER THROUGH THE KNIPPA GAP HYDROGEOLOGIC CONSTRICTION, UVALDE COUNTY, TEXAS, 2013, Adkins, J.

The Balcones Fault Zone Edwards aquifer (Edwards aquifer) is one of the major regional karst aquifers in the United States, with an average withdrawal of 950 million liters per day (L/d). This study focuses on the connection between the Uvalde pool and the San Antonio pool of the Edwards aquifer, west of the San Antonio metropolitan area in Uvalde County, Texas. This area is known as the Knippa Gap and is located north of the community of Knippa. The Knippa Gap is a major zone controlling the flow from the Uvalde pool to the San Antonio pool. The San Antonio pool is the primary source of water for the greater San Antonio water supply. The Knippa Gap is a restriction where the aquifer narrows to a width estimated to be approximately 4 km, is bounded by northeast trending faults of the Balcones Fault Zone on the north, and uplift from the Uvalde salient and igneous intrusive plugs to the south. (Green et al., 2006). The hydrogeology in the Knippa Gap has been a topic of major interest among researchers in this area for numerous years, yet the exact location, nature of boundaries, and karst hydrogeology are not well defined, and the flow through this area is in need of refinement to improve the aquifer water balance.
This study integrates recent research by other scientists with field studies conducted during the summer of 2012 as part of an M.S. thesis. This paper is limited to a discussion of the water quality as it relates to the southern flow boundary of the Knippa Gap near the Devils River Trend of the Uvalde salient. Water-quality data constrain a revised conceptual model of the flow and karstification in this critical area of recharge to the San Antonio pool, and provide specific lateral boundaries and vertical karstification zones which are being tested in the more comprehensive M.S. thesis. Although current interpretations are tentative, it appears this conceptual model will be readily convertible into a digital model that can test 2hypotheses relating a much broader suite of calibration data, including water levels, water budgets, and spring discharges.


Influence of meteorological variables to water quality in five lakes over the Aggtelek (Hungary) and Slovak karst regions – a case study, 2013, Samu Andrea, Csépe Zoltán, Báránykevei Ilona

The main objective of this study is to analyse the effect of tendencies in the meteorological variables on the water quality on the example of five lakes in the Aggtelek and Slovak karst. The data set used eleven water quality parameters (oxygen saturation, chemical oxygen demand, nitrate, nitrite, orthophosphate, total phosphorus, ammonium, pH, conductivity, iron, manganese), as well as daily data of six climatic parameters from the period 2008­2010. A cluster analysis is performed in order to determine the climate impact on the water quality parameters. Furthermore, factor analysis with special transformation, as a novelty in the study, is implemented to find out the weight of the climate parameters as explanatory variables and hence their rank of importance in forming the given water quality parameter as an influencing variable. The study introduces a methodology for analysing the climate impact on the water quality parameters. In order to reduce the number of the water quality parameters, a so called two­stage factor analysis was performed, which is a novel procedure. Application of the two­stage factor analysis involves both benefits and disadvantages. Its benefit is that it substantially reduces the number of resultant variables. In this way, information loss of the retained factors is around 20%. As a result, we received that both positive and negative extreme values of water quality parameters can be associated with weak or breaking­up warm fronts passing through over the region. On the contrary, the role of anticyclones or anticyclone ridge weather situations is supposed to be irrelevant. Unstable and extreme weather conditions act in the direction of breaking up the balance that would support the good water quality. This process does not benefit the water use nor the sensitive karst hydrogeological system


Using isotopes of dissolved inorganic carbon species and water to separate sources of recharge in a cave spring, northwestern Arkansas, USA Blowing Spring Cave, 2013, Knierim Katherine J. , Pollock Erik, Hays Phillip D.

Blowing Spring Cave in northwestern Arkansas is representative of cave systems in the karst of the Ozark Plateaus, and stable isotopes of water (δ18O and δ2H) and inorganic carbon (δ13C) were used to quantify soil-water, bedrock-matrix water, and precipitation contributions to cave-spring flow during storm events to understand controls on cave water quality. water samples from recharge-zone soils and the cave were collected from March to May 2012 to implement a multicomponent hydrograph separation approach using δ18O and δ2H of water and dissolved inorganic carbon (δ13C–DIC). During baseflow, median δ2H and δ18O compositions were –41.6‰ and –6.2‰ for soil water and were –37.2‰ and –5.9‰ for cave water, respectively. Median DIC concentrations for soil and cave waters were 1.8 mg/L and 25.0 mg/L, respectively, and median δ 13C–DIC compositions were –19.9‰ and –14.3‰, respectively. During a March storm event, 12.2 cm of precipitation fell over 82 h and discharge increased from 0.01 to 0.59 m3 /s. The isotopic composition of precipitation varied throughout the storm event because of rainout, a change of 50‰ and 10‰ for δ2H and δ18O was observed, respectively. Although, at the spring, δ2H and δ18O only changed by approximately 3‰ and 1‰, respectively. The isotopic compositions of precipitation and pre-event (i.e., soil and bedrock matrix) water were isotopically similar and the two-component hydrograph separation was inaccurate, either overestimating (>100%) or underestimating (<0%) the precipitation contribution to the spring. During the storm event, spring DIC and δ13C–DIC de- creased to a minimum of 8.6 mg/L and –16.2‰, respectively. If the contribution from precipitation was assumed to be zero, soil water was found to contribute between 23 to 72% of the total volume of discharge. Although the assumption of negligible contributions from precipitation is unrealistic, especially in karst systems where rapid flow through conduits occurs, the hydrograph separation using inorganic carbon highlights the importance of considering vadose-zone soil water when analyzing storm chemohydrographs.  


Molecular analyses of microbial abundance and diversity in the water column of anchialine caves in Mallorca, Spain., 2014, Menning D. M. , Boop L. M. , Graham E. D. , Garey J. R.

Water column samples from the island of Mallorca, Spain were collected from one site in Cova des Pas de Vallgornera (Vallgornera) and three sites (Llac Martel, Llac Negre, and Llac de les Delícies) in Coves del Drac (Drac). Vallgornera is located on the southern coast of Mallorca approximately 57 km southwest of Coves del Drac. Drac is Europe's most visited tourist cave, whereas Vallgornera is closed to the public. Water samples were analyzed for water chemistry using spectrophotometric methods, by quantitative PCR for estimated total abundance of microbial communities, and by length heterogeneity PCR for species richness and relative species abundance of Archaea, Bacteria, and microbial eukaryotes. Estimated total abundance was multiplied by relative species abundance to determine the absolute species abundance. All sites were compared to determine spatial distributions of the microbial communities and to determine water column physical and chemical gradients. Water quality and community structure data indicate that both Drac Delícies and Drac Negre have distinct biogeochemical gradients. These sites have communities that are similar to Vallgornera but distinct from Drac Martel, only a few hundred meters away. Drac Martel is accessible to the general public and had the most dissimilar microbial community of all the sites. Similarities among communities at sites in Drac and Vallgornera suggest that these two spatially separated systems are operating under similar ecological constraints.


SpeleoDisc: A 3-D quantitative approach to define the structural control of endokarst. An application to deep cave systems from the Picos de Europa. Spain, 2014, Ballesteros D, Jiménezsánchez M. Garcíasansegundo J, Borreguero M.

The influence of geological structure on endokarst can be studied by establishing the relationships between discontinuities (faults, joints and bedding) with a cave survey. The cave survey elaborated by speleologists represents the directions and inclinations of the cave conduits and can be compared to the strike and dip of the discontinuities of a karst massif. This paper proposes a methodology, the SpeleoDisc method, which is effective in defining the structural control of the endokarst. The method has been designed and applied in a pilot area from the alpine karst massif of the Picos de Europa, where long and deep cave systems are well developed, including more than 360 km of conduits in its entirety. The method is based on the projection of cave surveys on geological maps and cross-sections and the comparison between the direction and inclination of the cave survey data and the geometry of the massif discontinuities in three spatial dimensions (3-D). The SpeleoDisc method includes: 1) collection and management of topographic information; 2) collection and management of cave data; 3) definition of the groups of conduits; 4) elaboration of geological maps and cross-sections; 5) collection of discontinuity data (bedding, faults and joints); 6) definition of groups of discontinuities; and 7) comparison between the cave conduit groups and the families of discontinuities. The SpeleoDisc method allows us define the influence of the major and minor structures on the caves geometry, estimating percentage of caves forced by each group of massif discontinuities and their intersections in 3-D. Nevertheless, the SpeleoDisc approach is mainly controlled by 1) the amount and quality of the cave survey data and 2) the abundance of cave deposits covering the conduit, which can mask the original geometry.


LIFE AND WATER ON KARST. Monitoring of transboundary water resources of Northern Istria, 2015,

The monograph presents the natural features of Northern Istria, the karst and karst phenomena, karst hydrogeology, ecology and microbiology, and highlights in particular the vulnerability of the karst to various human activities. The main focus of attention is on karst water sources. In assessing their characteristics we used available knowledge of karst water on both sides of the border and supplemented it with new research on the transboundary area in question, which was based on field measurements and sampling, and chemical, microbiological and biological analysis of water. The collected findings form the basis for planning more effective monitoring of the quality of karst water sources, their protection and consequently the improvement of their quality.
 


The karst paradigm: changes, trends and perspectives, 2015, Klimchouk, Alexander

The paper examines representative definitions of karst (21), and discusses some concepts that influenced the modern un­derstanding of the phenomenon. Several trends are discussed that took karst science beyond the limits of the traditional par­adigm of karst. Dramatic progress in studies of speleogenesis plays the most significant role in changes taking place in the general understanding of karst. Also important is an adoption of the broad perspective to karst evolution which goes beyond the contemporary geomorphologic epoch and encompasses the entire life of a geological formation. Speleogenesis is viewed as a dynamic hydrogeological process of self-organization of the permeability structure in soluble rocks, a mechanism of the specific evolution of the groundwater flow system. The result is that these systems acquire a new, "karstic", quality and more complex organization. Since almost all essential attributes of karst owe their origin to speleogenesis, the latter is considered as the primary mechanism of the formation of karst. Two fundamental types of speleogenesis, hypogene and epigene, differentiate mainly due to distinct hydrodynamic characteristics of the respective groundwater flow systems: (1) of layered aquifer systems and fracture-vein flow systems of varying depths and degrees of confinement, and (2) of hydrodynamically open, near-surface unconfined systems. Accordingly, two major genetic types of karst are distinguished: hypogene and epigene. They differ in many characteristics, notably in relationships with the surface, hydrogeological behaviour, groundwater quality, and the areas of practical importance and approaches to solving karst-related issues. Although views on essential attributes of karst have been clearly changing, this was not reflected in definitions of the notion which are in broad use in the earth-science literature. A refined approach is suggested to the notion of karst in which it is viewed as a groundwater (fluid) flow system of a specific kind, which has acquired its peculiar properties in the course of speleogenesis.


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