Abstracts

Sediment, Particulate Organic Carbon, and Particulate Nitrogen Transport in Ephemeral and Perennial Streams of the Upper Coastal Plain Mississippi

Author(s): Hatten, J.; Dewey, J.; Mangum, C.; Choi, B.; Brasher, D.

The discharge of particulate organic carbon (POC) and particulate nitrogen (PN) from watersheds can be important in terms of carbon and nitrogen cycling and can also carry information about the process of erosion and sediment transport within the watershed. This paper will address the transport processes of POC, PN, and total suspended solids (TSS) during high discharge events in four ephemeral streams and a perennial stream of a small managed-forest. For this study, a 30 ha watershed located approximately 8 miles west of Eupora in Webster County, MS was monitored for water discharge, TSS, POC, and PN. These constituents were measured in 4 ephemeral streams and in one downstream perennial stream location. We assessed the %POC, %PN, and C/N of TSS across a range of discharges during large storm events. Preliminary results suggest that %POC and %PN may have an inverse relationship with TSS and discharge in all watersheds at all scales. The relationship between %POC, %PN, and C/N and discharge and TSS appeared to be different between the ephemeral and perennial streams suggesting that the process of sediment transport are different at each scale. These results point toward a need for a better understanding of sediment transport in managed watersheds and that the organic matter characteristics of TSS can play a strong role in this understanding.

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