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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 conical wall niche is see meander niche.?

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


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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 drift (Keyword) returned 33 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 30 of 33
An experimental study of calcite and limestone dissolution rates as a function of pH from -1 to 3 and temperature from 25 to 80 degrees C, 1998,
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Alkattan M, Oelkers Eh, Dandurand Jl, Schott J,
Dissolution rates of single calcite crystals, limestones, and compressed calcite powders were determined from sample weight loss using free-drift rotating disk techniques. Experiments were performed in aqueous HCl solutions over the bulk solution pH range -1 to 3, and at temperatures of 25 degrees, 50 degrees, and 80 degrees C. Corresponding rates of the three different sample types are identical within experimental uncertainty. Interpretation of these data using equations reported by Gregory and Riddiford [Gregory, D.P., Riddiford, A.C., 1956. Transport to the surface of a rotating disc. J. Chem. Sec. London 3, 3756-3764] yields apparent rate constants and H diffusion coefficients. The logarithms of overall calcite dissolution rates (r) obtained at constant disk rotation speed are inversely proportional to the bulk solution pH, consistent with r = k(2') a(H,b), where k(2)' stands for an apparent rate constant and a(H,b) designates the hydrogen ion activity in the bulk solution, This variation of dissolution rates with pH is consistent with corresponding rates reported in the literature and the calcite dissolution mechanism reported by Wollast [Wollast, R., 1990. Rate and mechanism of dissolution of carbonates in the system CaCO3-MgCO3. In: Stumm, W. (Ed.), Aquatic Chemical Kinetics. Wiley, pp. 431-445]. Apparent rate constants for a disk rotation speed of 340 rpm increase from 0.07 0.02 to 0.25 0.02 mol m(-2) s(-1) in response to increasing temperature from 25 degrees to 80 degrees C. H diffusion coefficients increase from (2.9 to 9.2) x 10(-9) m(2) s(-1) over this temperature range with an apparent activation energy of 19 kJ mol(-1). (C) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved

A Speleogenic Origin for Five-Column Rock, Wisconsin?, 1999,
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Day, M. , Jeff, K.
Five-Column Rock is among the most impressive of several notable fragile rock formations in southwestern Wisconsins unglaciated Driftless Area. Consisting of a basal sandstone plinth, a set of columns enclosing windows, and a tabular dolostone summit, the entire structure is over 6 m high. The Rock has not been previously studied in detail, and its origin has only generally been ascribed to weathering and eolian processes. Closer examination suggests that the feature originated as a phreatic cave developed in carbonate rocks transitional between the underlying Cambrian sandstone and the overlying Ordovician dolostones. The morphology of the feature, its stratigraphic context and its relationship to extant cave passage in the adjoining interfluvial ridge all point to a speleogenic origin, which may have broader significance for the development of similar features throughout the region.

The inhibiting action of intrinsic impurities in natural calcium carbonate minerals to their dissolution kinetics in aqueous H2O-CO2 solutions, 1999,
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Eisenlohr L, Meteva K, Gabrovsek F, Dreybrodt W,
We have measured the surface controlled dissolution rates of natural calcium carbonate minerals (limestone and marble) in H2O-CO2 solutions by using free drift batch experiments under closed system conditions with respect to CO2, at 10 degrees C with an initial partial pressure of carbon dioxide of 5.10(-2) atm. All experiments revealed reaction rates F, which can be described by the empirical relation: F-n1 = k(n1) . (1 - c/c(eq))(n1) for c < c(s), which switches to a higher order n(2) for calcium concentrations c greater than or equal to c(s) described by F-n2 = k(n2) . (1 - c/c(eq))(n2) . k(n1) and k(n2) are rate constants in mmole/(cm(2) . s), c(eq) is the equilibrium concentration with respect to calcite. The values of the constants n(1), n(2), k(n1), k(n2) and c(s) depend on the V/A ratio employed, where V is the volume of the solution and A is the surface area of the reacting mineral. Different calcium carbonate minerals exhibit different values of the kinetic constants. But generally with increasing V/A, there is a steep variation in the values of all kinetic constants, such that the rates are reduced with increasing V/A ratio. Finally with sufficiently large V/A these values become constant. These results are explained by assuming intrinsic inhibitors in the bulk of the mineral. During dissolution these are released from the calcite matrix and are adsorbed irreversibly at the reacting surface, where they act as inhibitors. The thickness d of the mineral layer removed by dissolution is proportional to the VIA ratio. The amount of inhibitors released per surface area is given by d c(int), where c(int) is their concentration id the bulk of the mineral. At low thicknesses up to approximate to 3 . 10(-4) cm in the investigated materials, the surface concentration of inhibitors increases until saturation is attained for thicknesses above this value. To analyze the surface concentration and the type of the inhibitors we have used Auger spectroscopy, which revealed the presence of aluminosilicate complexes at the surface of limestone, when a thickness of d approximate to 10(-3) cm had been removed by dissolution. In unreacted samples similar signals, weaker by one order of magnitude, were observed. Depth profiles of the reacted sample obtained by Ar-ion sputtering showed the concentration of these complexes to decrease to the concentration observed in the unreacted sample within a depth of about 10 nm. No change of the concentration with depth was observed in unreacted samples. These data suggest that complexes of aluminosilicates act as inhibitors, although other impurities cannot be excluded. Copyright (C) 1999 Elsevier Science Ltd

Subsidence caused by gypsum dissolution at Ripon, North Yorkshire, 1999,
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Cooper Ah, Waltham Ac,
In the afternoon of Wednesday 23 April 1997, a large subsidence crater opened up in front of a house on Ure Bank Terrace, on the northern outskirts of Ripon in North Yorkshire. Overnight its sides collapsed inwards, so that the hole had doubled in size by the next morning (Fig. 1). The subsidence crater was then 10 m in diam- eter, and 5.5 m deep to a choke of debris overlain by water 1 m deep. Its sudden appearance was the cause of considerable concern to the occupants of the adjacent house, and the event was widely reported in the national press and media. A subsidence hollow was mapped at this site by the 1856 Ordnance Survey and documented by Cooper (1986). More subsidence had occurred at the Ure Bank site in previous years, but this latest collapse had rather more impact. Creeping movement of the soil towards the new hole meant that the adjacent house was destined for demolition. The event was the latest of a series of ground collapses that have occurred, at an average rate of about one per year, in and around the city of Ripon. While they are little more than an inconvenience in farmland, they have the potential to cause serious damage when they occur in built-up areas. The immediate cause of the Ure Bank subsidence was the downward movement of soil, drift and recent fill into actively expanding voids within the ground. Ultimately, it was caused by the partial collapse of a cave ... This 250-word extract was created in the absence of an abstract

Occurrence of cyanazine compounds in groundwater: Degradates more prevalent than the parent compound, 2001,
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Kolpin D. W. , Thurman E. M. , Linhart S. M. ,
A recently developed analytical method using liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry was used to investigate the occurrence of cyanazine and its degradates cyanazine acid (CAC), cyanazine amide (CAM), deethylcyanazine (DEC), and deethylcyanazine acid (DCAC) in groundwater. This research represents some of the earliest data on the occurrence of cyanazine degradates in groundwater. Although cyanazine was infrequently detected in the 64 wells across Iowa sampled in 1999, cyanazine degradates were commonly found during this study. The most frequently detected cyanazine compound was DCAC (32.8%) followed by CAC (29.7%), CAM (17.2%), DEC (3.1%), and cyanazine (3.1%). The frequency of detection for cyanazine or one or more of its degradates (CYTOT) was more than 12-fold over that of cyanazine alone (39.1% for CYTOT Versus 3.1% for cyanazine). Of the total measured concentration of cyanazine, only 0.2% was derived from its parent compound-with DCAC (74.1%) and CAC (18.4%) comprising 92.5% of this total. Thus, although DCAC and CAC had similar frequencies of detection, DCAC was generally present in higher concentrations. No concentrations of cyanazine compounds for this study exceeded water-quality criteria for the protection of human health. Only cyanazine, however, has such a criteria established. Nevertheless, because these cyanazine degradates are still chlorinated, they may have similar toxicity as their parent compound-similar to what has been found with the chlorinated degradates of atrazine. Thus, the results of this study documented that data on the degradates for cyanazine are critical for understanding its fate and transport in the hydrologic system. Furthermore, the prevalence of the chlorinated degradates of cyanazine found in groundwater suggests that to accurately determine the overall effect on human health and the environment from cyanazine its degradates should also be considered. In addition, because CYTOT was found in 57.6% of the samples collected from alluvia[ aquifers, about 2-5 times more frequently than the other major aquifer types (glacial drift, bedrock/karst, bedrock/nonkarst) under investigation, this finding has long-term implications for the occurrence of CYTOT in streams. It is anticipated that low-level concentrations of CYTOT will continue to be detected in streams for years after the use of cyanazine has terminated (scheduled for the year 2000 in the United States), primarily through its movement from groundwater into streams during base-flow conditions

Chemical and physical controls on waters discharged from abandoned underground coal mines, 2001,
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Lopez D. L. , Stoertz M. W. ,
Abandoned up-dip drift mines in high-sulphur coal are a major source of acid mine drainage (AMD) in Appalachia. Studies of mines in the Monday Creek watershed of southeastern Ohio show that mines are recharged by surface runoff into subsidence features that dilate the natural stress-relief fracture system. The direct connection between the ground surface and the mines leads to a rapid response in the hydrograph, with a one- to four-day lag between precipitation and corresponding peak mine discharge. Subsidence occurs in topographic depressions where overburden is presumably relatively thin. Subsidence features drain 20-36% of the surface area. Unsaturated storage appears to be volumetrically insignificant, so that far more recharge occurs than the 5% often assumed for this region. Mine storage can change rapidly due to subsidence recharge. Hydrologically, mines with subsidence features behave like karst systems, with meteoric quickflow' representing more than 50% of the total flow. Mine discharge concentrations are relatively uniform through time, suggesting either equilibrium controls on chemistry or drainage of a well-mixed pool, or both. Evidence of dilution by high flows is slight. The first high flows after a baseflow period show only a slight increase in concentrations, attributed to flushing of stored reaction products. Loadings (concentrations x flow) depend on volumetric discharge and as a consequence are highly variable. The Eh/pH environment in up-dip drift mines indicates that mine waters are in contact with the atmosphere at least part of the time, unlike a true groundwater. Iron buffering partly controls pH, which clusters around values of 3.6-5.0

The reconstruction of fossil planation surface in China, 2002,
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Feng Jl, Cui Zj,
On the basis of results of relative subjects, the fossil planation surface has been discussed by the authors from the point of geomorphologic view. The discussion contents included the characteristic information, research methods, paleotopography (gradient and altitude) and other problems about fossil planation surface. The recognition and reconstruction of fossil planation surface mainly rely on the following characteristic information: ( i) the character of erosion unconformity surface; (ii) the paleo-weathering crust and residual deposits; (iii) the paleo-karst and filled deposit in the paleo-karst under the unconformity surface, and (iv) the character and environment of sediment above the unconformity surface. According to the above-mentioned characteristic information, the authors recognized and reconstructed two stages of fossil planation surface on Paleo-land of North China and Yangtze Paleo-land. These two fossil planation surfaces formed from Middle Ordovician to Lower Carboniferous and from Lower Permian to Upper Permian respectively. The paleo-gradient of fossil planation surface changed within 0.31parts per thousand-1.32parts per thousand, mostly less than 1.0parts per thousand. According to the developing depth of paleo-karst, the authors considered that in Suqiao buried-hill region of Paleo-land of North China, the paleo-altitude is 300 m or so above paleo-sea-level. The authors hope that the research is in favor of discussion about rising scale and process of the Tibetan Plateau. Besides, the research of fossil planation surface can provide a theoretical base for relative research, such as the reconstruction of paleoenvironment, the evolution and drift of paleo-continent, the formation and distribution of weathering ore deposits, the reservior and prospection of oil and gas, etc

Degradates provide insight to spatial and temporal trends of herbicides in ground water, 2004,
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Kolpin D. K. , Schnoebelen D. J. , Thurman E. M. ,
Since 1995, a network of municipal wells in Iowa, representing all major aquifer types (alluvial, bedrock/karst region, glacial drift, bedrock/nonkarst region), has been repeatedly sampled for a broad suite of herbicide compounds yielding one of the most comprehensive statewide databases of such compounds currently available in the United States. This dataset is ideal for documenting the insight that herbicide degradates provide to the spatial and temporal distribution of herbicides in ground water. During 2001, 86 municipal wells in Iowa were sampled and analyzed for 21 herbicide parent compounds and 24 herbicide degradates. The frequency of detection increased from 17% when only herbicide parent compounds were considered to 53% when both herbicide parents and degradates were considered. Thus, the transport of herbicide compounds to ground water is substantially underestimated when herbicide degradates are not considered. A significant difference in the results among the major aquifer types was apparent only when both herbicide parent compounds and their degradates were considered. In addition, including herbicide degradates greatly improved the statistical relation to the age of the water being sampled. When herbicide parent compounds are considered, only 40% of the wells lacking a herbicide detection could be explained by the age of the water predating herbicide use. However, when herbicide degradates were also considered, 80% of the ground water samples lacking a detection could be explained by the age of the water predating herbicide use. Finally, a temporal pattern in alachlor concentrations in ground water could only be identified when alachlor degradates were considered

Changing perspectives in the concept of 'Lago-Mare' in Mediterranean Late Miocene evolution, 2006,
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Orszagsperber Fabienne,
The Cenozoic Alpine orogeny caused the partition of Tethys into several basins. During the Late Neogene, the Mediterranean attained its final configuration, whereas, eastwards, the Paratethys, isolated from the World Ocean, disintegrated progressively into a series of smaller basins. As a result, an endemic fauna developed in these basins, mainly composed of brackish to freshwater faunas, indicating an environment affected by changes in water salinity. These small basins of the Paratethys were named 'Sea-Lakes' by Andrusov [Andrusov, D., 1890. Les Dreissenidae fossiles et actuelles d'Eurasie. Geol. min. 25, 1-683 (in Russian)]. Subsequently this name was translated into 'Lac-Mer' [Gignoux, M., 1936. Geologie stratigraphique, 2[deg]edition, Masson, Paris].In the Mediterranean isolated from the Atlantic at the end of the Miocene (Messinian), thick evaporites deposited, consisting of a marine Lower Evaporite unit and an Upper Evaporite unit, mainly of continental origin. Ruggieri [Ruggieri, G., 1962. La serie marine pliocenica e quaternaria della Val Marecchia. Atti Acad. Sci. Lett. Arti. Palermo, 19, 1-169.] used the term 'Lago-Mare', to characterize the brackish to fresh water environment which occurred within the Mediterranean at the end of the Messinian.During recent decades, numerous scientific investigations concerning the history of the Messinian within the Mediterranean were devoted to the understanding of conditions prevailing after the deposition of the marine evaporites. Brackish to freshwater faunas are found in several outcrops and boreholes in the Mediterranean, both in the uppermost beds of gypsum and inter-bedded within the clastic sediments of the Upper Evaporite Unit, immediately preceeding the flooding by the marine Pliocene waters. These faunas, because of their similarities with the fauna described in the Paratethys, were named 'Paratethyan', or 'Caspi-brackish' fauna, this leading some authors to imply a migration of these fauna from Paratethys to the Mediterranean. However, others refute this hypothesis.New data induced some researchers to consider that exchanges existed between the Mediterranean and the Eastern Paratethys and also between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic Ocean at the Miocene-Pliocene transition. These investigations now take advantage of the accurate time scales established by authors (biostratigraphy, cyclostratigraphy, magnetostratigraphy), allowing good stratigraphic correlations between the Mediterranean and the Paratethys, and precisions on the geodynamic evolution of this area.Furthermore, sediments at the base of the Zanclean (MPl1), locally containing brackish to fresh water faunas conducted authors to attribute this formation to an infra- or pre-Pliocene and also to a Lago-Mare 'event'.Thus, the 'Lago-Mare' concept drifted from its original meaning, and is evolving because of progresses in the understanding of the Mediterranean geodynamics and the adjacent areas during the Miocene-Pliocene transition

Contributions of geophysical techniques to the exploration of the Molnár János Cave (Budapest, Hungary), 2010,
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Surá, Nyi Gergely, Dombrá, Di Endre, Leé, LŐ, Ssy Szabolcs

Located in the centre of the Pannonian, one of the hottest basins in Europe with high average heat flow values, Hungary has long been famous for hot water springs and frequent cave occurrences. The Molnár János Cave, an active thermokarstic cave, belonging to the Buda Hills karst system, lies beneath a highly populated district of Budapest. Its large passages are almost completely filled by lukewarm water. Only the upper part of its largest known chamber rises above the water level, which offers an excellent site to examine recent cave generation processes. However, hitherto, no dry subsurface gateway existed towards this chamber; it was only accessible underwater. In this paper, we present the results of various geophysical investigations including GPR, magnetic and seismic methods, carried out in a close cooperation between geophysicists and speleologists. The aim of the measurements was to determine the precise position of the hall relative to a nearby drift. Based upon the successful seismic survey and first break analysis, a precise and efficient boring could be designed to realise the connection. Finally, a passage between the two cavities has been established and, thus, the chamber of the cave is now accessible to the whole scientific community.


Giant pockmarks in a carbonate platform (Maldives, Indian Ocean), 2011,
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Betzler C. , Lindhorst S. , Hubscher C. , Ludmann T. , Furstenau J. , Reijmer J.

Circular structures and depressions in carbonate platforms are known to represent karst chimneys or sinkholes which form as a response to rock solution. This formation mechanism is plausible for shallow-water carbonates which lie in the reach of meteoric diagenesis or fresh-water lenses. Circular structures which occur in deeper waters, however, need an alternative interpretation. Such an example of sea-floor depressions in more than 300. m deep waters occurs in the Inner Sea of the Maldives carbonate platform in the Indian Ocean. The structures were mapped with multibeam and Parasound, multi-channel seismics were used to link the depressions with structures at depth. The circular depressions have diameters of up to 3000. m and depths of up to 180. m. The craters are interpreted as pockmarks formed through the venting of gas and fluids. Gas and fluid lenses below the pockmarks are reflected by bright spots in the seismic sections as well as a reduction of the instantaneous frequency. These areas at depth are linked to chimneys connected to faults and drowned Oligocene carbonate banks. A model is presented that relates the different forms and sizes of the structures to distinct development stages of sea floor deformation to one process. Early stages of gas and fluid migration into the shallow part of the sedimentary succession induce formation of dome-shaped bodies. Initial gas and fluid escape to the sea floor is reflected by the formation of sand volcanoes and aligned small pockmarks. Active pockmarks are the deepest, and have the shape of truncated cones in cross section. Mature pockmarks are characterized by erosion of the flanks of the structure by bottom currents. Late stage pockmarks are bowl-shaped in cross section, and are to different degrees filled by drift sediments. Packages of strata revealing high reflection amplitudes and high interval velocities interpreted as microbially-mediated carbonate precipitates underlie some of the pockmarks. The pockmarks in the Maldives show that circular structures other than solution-related features can be abundant in carbonate platform deposits and that such structures may be more abundant in the geological record of carbonate platforms as previously thought. Pockmarks in the Maldives indicate that the archipelago is an example of a hydrocarbon system which consists of an isolated oceanic carbonate platform overlying a volcanic basement and lacustrine source rocks.


CORA - a dedicated device for carbon dioxide monitoring in cave environments, 2012,
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Luetscher Marc, Ziegler Felix

High resolution time-series of cave CO2 fluctuations are increasingly demanded to quantify calcite precipitation processes. CORA, an energy-efficient NDIR-device, has been specifically developed for the long-term monitoring of carbon dioxide in remote cave environments. To allow comparison between different cave sites, changes in air pressure and temperature are compensated for using dedicated probes. Laboratory experiments demonstrate that CORAs precision is adapted to the analysis of spatially and temporally variable CO2 regimes and therefore suitable for a large number of applications. Data obtained with 12 independently calibrated instruments are reproducible within 3% (1s). The two-point calibration function is validated using certified reference gases for an overall accuracy determined at 50ppmv, resp.≤3%. Although no significant drift was observed during the test phase a periodic recalibration is recommended. Initial results from field studies show that continuous monitoring over a full annual cycle is possible at 4 hour intervals without specific maintenance.


Differences in aquatic microcrustacean assemblages between temporary and perennial springs of an alpine karstic aquifer, 2013,
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Mori N. , Brancelj A.

Microcrustacean (Copepoda, Ostracoda) assemblages were investigated at the interface of the vadose and phreatic zones in the alpine karstic aquifer from the Julian Alps in Slovenia (SE Europe). Two temporary and one perennial karstic outlets were sampled by filtering the water several times over 2 years. Concurrently, benthos from the mouth of a perennial spring and from an adjacent spring brook were collected. Altogether 24 microcrustacean species were recorded. The spatial and temporal variation in drift densities and species composition was high indicating complex groundwater hydrological pathways being dependent on precipitation regime. Non-metric Multidimensional Scaling (NMDS) clearly separated drift samples from temporary springs and other sample groups (drift in perennial spring, spring mouth and spring brook benthos). ANOSIM revealed statistically significant differences between all sample groups (Diacyclops zschokkei, Elaphoidella phreatica and Mixtacandona sp. B contributed over 50 % to the observed differences among sample groups. Three species (Nitocrella sp., Speocyclops infernus, Lessinocamptus pivai), known to be typical epikarst species, were collected only in the drift from one temporary spring (T2). Mao Tau species accumulation curves did not reach asymptote for the drift from temporary springs, but did for the drift from perennial spring, and for the spring mouth and the spring brook benthos. The results on drift composition indicated the variation in the origin of the water discharging at the interface of vadoze and phreatic zones depending greatly on water level conditions, while the drift densities were higher in the water presumably discharging from phreatic zone (perennial spring and temporary springs during low water levels).


LEAD MINE CAVES IN SOUTHWESTERN WISCONSIN, USA, 2013,
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Day Mick, Reeder Phil

Lead ores were mined extensively in the Driftless Area of southwestern Wisconsin during the middle of the XIXth century, when the Upper Mississippi Valley Lead District was one of the major lead-producing regions in the world. Much of the ore was removed from caves that were initially entered directly from the surface or later intersected by vertical shafts or near-horizontal adits. Lead ore mining began around 1815, and was most prevalent between 1825 and 1870, with peak production in the 1840s and an almost uninterrupted decline in production after 1850. Ores were extracted from at least ten prominent mine caves in dolostones in the Platteville and Galena Formations South of the Wisconsin River, and the mine caves in total represent perhaps 50% of the local cave population. Among the more significant lead mine caves are the St. John Mine (Snake Cave), Dudley Cave, the Arthur and Company Mine Cave, the Brown and Turley Mine and the Atkinson Mine Cave. Caves North of the Wisconsin River in the Prairie du Chien Formation dolostones apparently yielded insignificant volumes of ore. Mining has altered the original caves considerably, and there remains considerable evidence of the mining, including excavated and modified passages up to 15 meters wide with rooms and pillars, drill holes and mining tools. Outside the caves there are extensive spoil piles, together with the remains of ore smelters and abandoned settlements. Although none of the lead mine caves remain active industrially, they remain import- ant in several contexts: they provide information about regional speleogenesis; they played a pivotal role in early European and African American settlement of Wisconsin; they were economically of great significance during the XIXth century; and they are important now as bat hibernacula, as caving sites and in regional tourism.


THE USE OF DROUGHT-INDUCED “CROP LINES” AS A TOOL FOR CHARACTERIZATION OF KARST TERRAIN, 2013,
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Panno S. V. , Luman D. E. , Kelly W. R. , Alschuler M. B.

The persistent drought of the 2012 summer in the Midwestern United States significantly impacted the health and vigor of Illinois’ crops. An unforeseen outcome of the extreme drought was that it provided a rare opportunity to examine and characterize the bedrock surface and underlying karst aquifer within the Driftless Area of northwestern Illinois. Complex networks of vegetated lines and polygonal patterns, herein referred to as crop lines, crisscrossed the dry summer landscape of Jo Daviess County. Initially, the crop lines were examined and photographed using a handheld digital camera on the ground and from a small aircraft at 300 meters altitude above ground level (AGL). The orientations, widths and horizontal separations of the lines were measured. Crop lines and their patterns and orientations were compared with those of crevices in outcrops, road cuts and quarries, and with lineaments seen in LiDAR elevation data of Jo Daviess County.
Primarily confined to alfalfa fields and, to a lesser extent, soybeans and corn, the crop lines are the result of a combination of extremely dry conditions, and a thin soil zone overlying fractured and creviced Galena Dolomite bedrock. The plants forming the lines tend to grow denser, taller (0.5 m vs 0.15 m) and darker/greener than those in adjacent areas. Alfalfa taproots are the deepest of the aforementioned crops extending up to 7 m below the surface. Groundwater and associated soil moisture within the vadose zone present within bedrock fractures and crevices provide the necessary moisture to sustain the overlying healthy plants, while the remaining area of the field exhibits stunted and sparse plant growth. Overall, the crop lines are a reflection of the creviced pattern of the underlying karst bedrock and associated karst aquifer, and reveal the degree and extent of karstification in eastern Jo Daviess County. The crop lines were consistent with the angular lines of adjacent streams that show a rectangular drainage pattern. Stream patterns like these are well known and are due to drainage controlled by crevice/fracture patterns in the top of bedrock. The lines appear to have been formed by two sets of fractures trending roughly north-south and east-west with occasional cross-cutting fractures/crevices. The east-west trending lines are consistent with tension joints, and the north-south lines are consistent with the shear joints identified by earlier researchers. The trends of the crop lines, tension and shear joints are similar to those of lineaments identified from LiDAR elevation data in the same area (N 20° W, and N 70° W and N 70° E) and coincide with the occurrence of karst features throughout eastern Jo Daviess County.The pattern observed in the crop lines closely mimics the fracture/crevice patterns of the bedrock surface. The widths and extent of the lines may be used as a surrogate for the karst features present on the bedrock surfaces. Crop lines, coupled with solution-enlarged crevices seen in bedrock exposures, yield a three dimensional view of the bedrock crevice-fracture system, and ultimately could provide a more complete and accurate model of the karst aquifer in the study area and similar karst areas in the Midwestern United States and perhaps in other karst regions of the world.


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