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Enviroscan Ukrainian Institute of Speleology and Karstology


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Community news

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 nesquehonite is a cave mineral - mg(hco3)(oh).2h2o [11].?

Checkout all 2699 terms in the KarstBase Glossary of Karst and Cave Terms


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KarstBase a bibliography database in karst and cave science.

Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
See all featured articles
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 cenote (Keyword) returned 27 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 27 of 27
Syngenetic Karst in Australia: a review, 2006,
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Grimes, Ken G.

In syngenetic karst speleogenesis and lithogenesis are concurrent: caves and karst features are forming at the same time as the loose sediment is being cemented into a soft, porous rock. "Eogenetic karst" and "soft-rock karst" are closely related terms for features developed in soft, poorly-consolidated limestones. The distinctive features of syngenetic karst are: shallow horizontal cave systems; a general lack of directed conduits (low irregular chambers occur instead); clustering of caves at the margins of topographic highs or along the coast; paleosoil horizons; vertical solution pipes which locally form dense fields; extensive breakdown and subsidence to form collapse-dominated cave systems; a variety of surface and subsurface breccias and locally large collapse dolines and cenotes; and limited surface sculpturing (karren). These features are best developed in host sediments that have well developed primary matrix permeability and limited secondary cementation (and hence limited mechanical strength), for example dune calcarenites. Certain hydrological environments also assist: invading swamp waters or mixing at a well-developed watertable; or, near the coast, mixing at the top and bottom of a freshwater lens floating on salt water. Where these factors are absent the karst forms tend to be more akin to those of classical hard-rock or telogenetic karst.


Cenotes (anchialine caves) on Cozumel Island, Quintana Roo, Mexico, 2007,
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Mejaortz L. M. , Yez G. , Lpezmeja M. , And Zarzagonzlez E.
Cozumel Island is a Caribbean locale having karst as the main component of its surface.Known caves are steep-sided, water-filled sinkholes (cenotes), and almost all of them are considered to be anchialine caves because they have seawater connections. In order to identify the location of as many cenotes as possible on the island, we based our study initially on aerial photographs. This was followed by visits to each site for field verification and collection of physical data and biological specimens. We explored several cenotes to record physical data such as temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, depth, pH, light, and to collect the animals living there. As a result, we report on eighteen cenotes on Cozumel Island, their location and fauna. Physical data from three cenotes showed that the freshwater is very thin at the top of the water table.Most of the systems are marine water-filled. Varying degrees of connection exist between these sinkholes and the ocean. In addition, other water bodies were found not to be cenotes, but aguadas (shallow water basins).

GPR detection of karst and archaeological targets below the historical centre of Merida, Yucatn, Mexico, 2009,
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Barba Luis, Blancas Jorge, Ortiz Agustin, Ligorred Josep

The Historical Center of Merida has been classified as a “zone of high patrimonial value” based on the study of topography and the historical documents that show a long-term occupation, non-interrupted since pre- Columbian times when T’Hó was the great capital of the northern region of the Maya area. For the local government, rehabilitation of the Historical Center of Merida has been a great priority. Among others, this project includes preservation of archaeological remains (pre-Columbian or colonial) and detection of karstic zones under the city. In order to prevent damage to the patrimony, ground penetrating radar (GPR) surveys were carried out employing 200 and 400 MHz antennas along 16.5 km of the city streets. After data analysis, it was possible to build a map showing the locations of subsurface karst features and archaeological remains below the street pavement, many of which correlate with archaeological platforms proposed in historic documents as well as some of the cenotes recorded in popular memory. As result, for the first time in Mexico, a local government has information available that will allow them to minimize damage to archaeological remains and mitigate risks associated with construction above shallow subsurface karstic zones within this important modern city


Investigating Ancient Maya Agricultural Adaptation through Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) Analysis of Karst Terrain , Northern Yucat n, Mexico, 2010,
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Munro Stasiuk Mandy J. & Manahan T. Kam
Landscape adaptation on the Northern Yucatn Peninsula, Mexico, is particularly difficult, as soils are thin and the terrain is devoid of any surface water other than the occasional sinkhole (cenote) that connects directly to the groundwater system. Despite this, ancient Maya cities, including Xuenkal, emerged and thrived, likely because of their proximity to natural sinkholes. In the case of Xuenkal, these sinkholes, known locally as rejolladas, have bases above the local water table and, as such, do not provide direct access to the underlying water, but they provide closer access. Recognizing that the presence of rejolladas was likely important to the ancient Maya the purpose of this study is to characterize the rejolladas in terms of their subsurface characteristics, specifically bedrock configuration and soil. Ground penetrating radar analysis, as well as the results of a test pit excavation, confirm the presence of deep soils in the rejollada bases. It seems that the smaller deeper rejolladas have the thickest soils and sediment. The ancient city of Xuenkal is constructed amidst a particularly dense cluster of rejolladas which may have contributed to its location. Rejolladas, containing significantly thicker soils than the surrounding karst surface, and the ability to sustain dense healthy vegetation would have been particularly desirable for the Maya to capitalize on.

Volcanogenic origin of cenotes near Mt Gambier, southeastern Australia, 2010,
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Webb John A. , Grimes Ken G. , Lewis Ian D.

The cenotes near Mt Gambier are circular, cliffed, collapse dolines containing water-table lakes up to 125 m deep, floored by large rubble cones. They lie in a flat, coastal plain composed of mid-Tertiary limestone. Most of the deepest cenotes are concentrated in two small areas located along trends sub-parallel to the main joint direction in the limestone. The cenotes do not connect to underwater phreatic passages, and water chemistry data confirm that they are not part of an interconnected karst network. They formed by collapse into large chambers (up to > 1 million m3) that extended 125 m or more below the land surface. Several cenotes have actively growing stromatolites on the sub-vertical walls that started growing at 8000 years BP.

The caves that collapsed to form the deep Mt Gambier cenotes are much larger than shallow and deep phreatic caves in the area, and do not connect into deep phreatic systems. They were not formed by freshwater/seawater mixing, responsible for many of the well-known Yucatan cenotes, because they are not associated with locations of the mixing zone during previous high sea levels, and are much larger than caves presently forming along the mixing zone near Mt Gambier. Instead dissolution was most likely due to a process whereby acidified groundwater containing large amounts of volcanogenic CO2 ascended up fractures from the magma chambers that fed the Pleistocene–Holocene volcanic eruptions in the area; deep reservoirs of volcanogenic CO2 occur nearby.

Cave dissolution could have been due to release of CO2 during the Mt Gambier eruption 28,000 years ago, followed by collapse to form cenotes during the low sea levels of the Last Glacial Maximum 20,000 years ago. The cenotes then flooded 8000 years ago as sea level rose, and stromatolites began to grow on the walls.
 


First Records of Polychaetous Annelids from Cenote Aerolito (Sinkhole and Anchialine Cave) in Cozumel Island, Mexico, 2011,
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Frontanauribe S. C. , Sollsweiss V.

In this study, polychaetous annelids are recorded for the first time in Mexican cenotes and anchialine caves. These organisms were collected in the Cenote Aerolito (Cozumel Island, on the Caribbean coast of Quintana Roo) during three sampling events from February 2006 to April 2008, among algae, roots of mangroves, and in karst sediments. A total of 1518 specimens belonging to five families (Paraonidae, Capitellidae, Nereididae, Dorvilleidae, and Syllidae), ten genera, and eleven species were collected. In the cave system, two specimens of the amphinomid Hermodice carunculata were found. This cenote and its biota are now in danger of disappearing because of a marina construction project in its western shore.


Aqueous Geochemical Evidence of Volcanogenic Karstification: Sistema Zacaton, Mexico, 2011,
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Gary M. O. , Doctor D. H. , Sharp J. M.

The Sistema Zacatón karst area in northeastern Mexico (Tamaulipas state) is limited to a relatively focused area (20 km2) in a carbonate setting not prone to extensive karstification. The unique features found here are characteristic of hydrothermal karstification processes, represent some of the largest phreatic voids in the world, and are hypothesized to have formed from interaction of a local Pleistocene magmatic event with the regional groundwater system. Aqueous geochemical data collected from five cenotes of Sistema Zacatón between 2000 and 2009 include temperature (spatial, temporal, and depth profiles), geochemical depth profiles, major and trace ion geochemistry, stable and radiogenic isotopes, and dissolved gases. Interpretation of these data indicates four major discoveries: 1) rock-water interaction occurs between groundwater, the limestone matrix, and local volcanic rocks; 2) varying degrees of hydrogeological connection exist among cenotes in the system as observed from geochemical signatures; 3) microbially-mediated geochemical reactions control sulfur and carbon cycling and influence redox geochemistry; and 4) dissolved gases are indicative of a deep volcanic source. Dissolved 87Sr/86Sr isotope ratios (mean 0.70719) are lower than those of the surrounding Cretaceous limestone (0.70730-0.70745), providing evidence of groundwater interaction with volcanic rock, which has a 87Sr/86Sr isotope ratio of 0.7050. Discrete hydraulic barriers between cenotes formed in response to sinkhole formation, hydrothermal travertine precipitation, and shifts in the local water table, creating relatively isolated water bodies. The isolation of the cenotes is reflected in distinct water chemistries among them. This is observed most clearly in the cenote Verde where a water level 4-5 meters lower than the adjacent cenotes is maintained, seasonal water temperature variations occur, thermoclines and chemoclines exist, and the water is oxic at all depths. The surrounding cenotes of El Zacatón, Caracol, and La Pilita show constant water temperatures both in depth profile and in time, have similar water levels, and are almost entirely anoxic. A sulfur (H2S) isotope value of δ34S = -1.8 ‰ (CDT) in deep water of cenote Caracol, contrasted with two lower sulfur isotopic values of sulfide in the water near the surface of the cenote (δ34S = -7 ‰ and -8 ‰ CDT). These δ34S values are characteristic of complex biological sulfur cycling where sulfur oxidation in the photic zone results in oxidation of H2S to colloidal sulfur near the surface in diurnal cycles. This is hypothesized to result from changes in microbial community structure with depth as phototropic, sulfur-oxidizing bacteria become less abundant below 20 m. Unique microbial communities exist in the anoxic, hydrothermal cenotes that strongly mediate sulfur cycling and likely influence mineralization along the walls of these cenotes. Dissolved CO2 gas concentrations ranged from 61-173 mg/L and total dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) δ13C values measured at cenote surfaces ranged from -10.9 ‰ to -11.8 ‰ (PDB), reflecting mixed sources of carbon from carbonate rock dissolution, biogenic CO2 and possibly dissolved CO2 from volcanic sources. Surface measurements of dissolved helium gas concentrations range from 50 nmol/kg to 213 nmol/kg. These elevated helium concentrations likely indicate existence of a subsurface volcanic source; however, helium isotope data are needed to test this hypothesis. The results of these data reflect a speleogenetic history that is inherently linked to volcanic activity, and support the hypothesis that the extreme karst development of Sistema Zacatón would likely not have progressed without groundwater interaction with the local igneous rocks 


Underwater Caves of the Yucatn Peninsula, 2012,
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Coke Iv, James G.

The Yucatán Peninsula is one of the largest limestone platforms in the world. The Mexico isthmus region of the peninsula is a low-relief pitted karst plain containing few surface drainage systems or lakes. Karst windows punctuate the scrubby terrain, exposing a shallow aquifer that engulfs an ancient dry cave environment. These openings, called cenotes, allow modern explorers to document a growing assemblage of deep underwater sinks, and exceptionally long and complex underwater cave systems. Deep classic sinks are common to the interior of the isthmus. Long horizontal caves remain a coastal phenomenon. Their complexity is derived from irregular sea-level fluctuations produced during Pleistocene glaciations. Fractures within the parent strata and tidal fluctuations of the halocline are crucial elements in sustaining extant speleogenesis.


Regionalization Based on water Chemistry and Physicochemical Traits in the Ring of Cenotes, Yucatan, Mexico, 2012,
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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.


Five Blues Lake National Park, Belize: a cautionary management tale, 2012,
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Day M. , Reynolds B. ,

Karst is inherently dynamic, and this may be manifest in unexpected ways, which may have major implications for management of protected areas, where changes may have major impacts on visitor numbers and revenue streams. In Five Blues Lake National Park, Belize, the principal visitor focus is Five Blues Lake itself. An anomalous feature with characteristics of a karst window or cenote but in the setting of a polje or ponor lake, Five Blues has both surface and underground drainage components. Establishment of the national park proceeded under the impression that the lake was a permanent feature, but over July 20 to 25, 2006, the lake drained rapidly underground. Without the lake, visitor numbers and park revenues declined, and the park was all but abandoned. The lake refilled in 2007, but visitor numbers continue to lag. Management and promotion of hydrologic features within protected areas needs to take such possibilities into account, emphasizing variability and change and avoiding a focus on conditions that may not prevail at any given time.


Classification of closed depressions in carbonate karst, 2013,
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Kranjc, A.

Closed depressions are the most characteristic features of karst having dolines among them. Some of the terms, such as doline, uvala, and polje, originate from the Dinaric karst, internationally introduced by J. Cvijic´ in 1893. Karst depressions belong to mezo- and macroforms (from decameter to kilometer scale). The basic feature is the doline, which can be further divided due to its genesis into more main types: solution (the real karst doline), collapse, dropout, buried, cap rock, and suffosion doline. The larger depressions, by dimension and form somewhere between a doline and a polje, are the uvala, but genetically they are closer to the doline. Polje (meaning a plain or field in Slavic languages) is the biggest closed epression, its bottom covering several hundreds of square kilometers. Closed depressions, solution dolines and poljes especially, are regarded as indicators of a fully developed karst (holokarst by Cvijic


Sinkholes and the Engineering and Environmental Impacts of Karst: Proceedings of the thirteenth multidisciplinary Conference, 2013,
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Welcome to the Thirteenth Multidisciplinary Conference on Sinkholes and the Engineering and Environmental Impacts of Karst in sunny Carlsbad, New Mexico. This will be the farthest west the Sinkhole Conference, as it is informally known, has met since its inception in 1984. The setting will provide conference participants with a unique opportunity to view karst phenomena such as gypsum cenotes that are uncommon outside the southwestern United States, and world-class caves and karst features that occur (for better or worse) within and adjacent to giant oil fields of the Permian Basin region.
In 2011 the National Cave and Karst Research Institute (NCKRI) assumed responsibility for hosting the Sinkhole Conference series. NCKRI, a non-profit organization dedicated to pure and applied research on caves, karst phenomena, and karst hydrology is well-positioned to assume a leadership role in organizing and hosting the conference. Several of the staff of NCKRI have a long history of participation in past Sinkhole Conferences, and we look forward to supporting and hosting future meetings in other areas of the United States and abroad. The fourteenth conference will be held in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 2015, and discussion has begun on the possibility of an international setting for a future conference.
We wish to dedicate this year’s proceedings volume to the memory of Barry Beck, who died in 2011. Barry initiated the Sinkhole Conference series in 1984 and was instrumental in maintaining the series of meetings over the years through several sponsors. Although his energy and enthusiasm will be greatly missed by future conference organizers, we are honored to carry Barry’s legacy into the future.

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